Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

Looking back at this semester, I am positive that my experience with this class was a positive one. We covered a broad arrangement of topics but my favorite thing was that each one seemed to either connect to another subject that we covered or explained more about a topic that we covered in earlier classes. Some topics could seem repetitive at a glance but were really a different insight on things.

The main thing that I took away from this class is something that sounds cliché is that everyone is going through their own personal battles. I never knew how much your family history could tie in to someone’s probability of fighting a mental illness. On top of that, many of the speakers in class emphasized the wording on how to describe someone with a diagnosed mental illness like for example someone with depression instead of referring to them as a depressed person. Despite the circumstances, whatever issue or mental illness that someone may have does not define them as a person. Sometimes things may seem out of our control and we have to do our best every day to be better than we were the day before (realistically we can’t always achieve this).

I never really had a favorite topic throughout the semester because what really interested me was how other topics tied into each other. For example, when we were covering substance abuse, we discussed things like people with diagnosed mental illness like anxiety disorders or clinical depression might have a higher susceptibility to abusing substances because in one way or another, all the person is trying to do is feel better or cope. This idea was my second biggest takeaway from the class because it highlights how everyone is striving for happiness, even though it’s sometimes a fleeting thing. We can’t always be happy because without the lows, the highs don’t feel as good and vice versa. All we can do is put together the best formula we can for our happiness by understanding the situations that we are in and working towards the best possible outcome.

The biggest takeaway that I got from this class is the realization of how habitual it is for me as an individual to mindlessly browse social media and/or be on my phone. The activity where we had an entire week of disconnection during class by turning off our phones and putting them away really opened my eyes to how addicted to my phone I really am. During that activity I would have a thought in the back of my mind of “oh I need to check my phone” or something like “I haven’t felt my phone vibrate in a while, I need to check it.” After that week of class, I’d be studying and find myself just mindlessly grabbing my phone any second I had downtime in typing or focusing on my work where I wouldn’t even have any notifications, I would just open my phone and automatically click Instagram or Twitter to see what’s going on. As time went on and because of that class activity, I became much more aware of my addiction to my phone and began putting my phone in another room or turning it completely off during times when my attention was best turned towards the task at hand. I’ve become more productive in my studying and other tasks where I just need to focus on one thing instead of keeping my phone by my side. This is an area that I still need to improve the most on, though, and I am very appreciative that we did that activity in class.

I wasn’t able to personally relate to every single topic in class but I was able to retain the information to where I can apply it to the things that I personally struggle with. I can also provide help or guidance to my close friends that trust me enough to open up to me with their struggles in life because in the past my ignorance prevented me from being able to really connect with them and whatever they are going through. Understanding the actual science behind mental illnesses and common struggles preventing happiness in every day life is incredibly more beneficial than believing the stigmas behind mental health and what you see on Twitter.

I really feel that this image below, though simple, helps illustrate one of the main ideas behind this class. Happiness isn’t a one size fits all type thing to where you can take a cookie cutter approach to every individual and he/she is automatically “fixed”. Each and every person is different from their current mental state to their family history and those with the chance to affect someone’s happiness has to take that into account. One thing that may calm someone’s anxiety may heighten another’s so you have to be cautious and fully understand someone’s personal situation before you try to begin suggesting things for them to do.

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

In this class I have learned a lot about a lot of different topics and furthered my knowledge of things I already had an idea about. The first one that stuck out to me that I did not really know anything about was just how big of an impact anxiety can have on a person. I knew we all had a bit of anxiety but I did not know the difference in regular versus Pathologic and how pathologic causes the body not to function properly.

The second and probably my favorite topic was when we covered substance abuse. This is something that I have witnessed through family and friends my whole life so I was eager to see what the science was behind it. I took a good long look at the alternative strategies and will look to use these next time something happens within my family. Another topic that I felt like branched off from this topic was emotional resilience. Coming back from substance abuse is something that requires a lot of emotional resilience. Coming back from dark places to return to the high level of living just about everybody wants to live on.

My favorite topic was actually what I wound up doing my final project on because it was what interested me the most. Nutrition and well-being is paramount in importance to me personally because I am an athlete and just reinforcing ideas was really good for me. I also liked how nutrition and physical wellbeing impacts just about every other topic we cover. If you are fueling your body right that means you are avoiding substances that are harmful towards your body. And then by being physically fit can add tons of confidence and can remove stress about looking the part and more accepted in the social world.

I think there are many ways for me to apply concepts learned from this class and better my life because of it. The first was to be more understanding of people and just kind of take a step back when someone seems to be getting anxious and offer help and maybe give them some mindfulness practices if they need it. Also with my family and friends and ways to try and prevent substance abuse. One change I think I will put into my life was cleaning up my diet. I put a lot of food and calories into my body and living next to Sugar Shack makes it tough to not just lob donuts into my mouth all day.

I have been posting on my twitter the social media posts and will continue retweeting and replying to VCU Cobe and other ways to spread the word.

https://hbr.org/2018/11/what-kind-of-happiness-do-people-value-most

I think this picture signifies the class because it is fruit that is happy! But in all seriousness to me it is kind of like a group of friends, who individually are good but together are great and I think that is what can be said about all of the lessons we learned so far this year are.

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

 

Some lessons that had a big impact on me over the course of the semester were an anxiety disorder, positive psychology, and nutrition and wellbeing. Anxiety disorders helped me because I suffer from a lot of anxiety and being able to have better-coping skills and implementing those skills have helped me tremendously. I now take the time that I need to ensure that I will not let my anxiety get the best of me by using breathing exercises and reassuring myself of what I do know. Positive psychology helped me a lot when I was dealing with a lot of personal issues that were holding me back academically, professionally, and socially; I began by reading a positive quote every morning and night and think of all of the good things that happened to me that day. I also just tried to use a positive outlook in every situation that I was in. Because of the previous two, nutrition and wellbeing probably had the biggest impact on me. For most of the semester, I had a difficult time with making sure I was eating and I was okay overall but often ignored both aspects. It took me until I was talking about all previous topics with my two best friend that they actually helped me and made sure I was eating enough food and that I just checked in with myself overall. 

I think for myself to commit to the application of the things I have learned that I will do what I typically do, which is incorporating it into my written out a schedule that is in my planner. I typically update and live by my planner when new or different things change in my life and it is what grounds me into doing what I need to do to accomplish my goals. I think that this class has helped me tremendously and I definitely want to use what I learned in my professional career, specifically being able to use positive psychology, personality traits and SURPS, emotional resilience, social and emotional learning, and academic wellbeing. I think these sections will help my professional life in such a way that I can use positive psychology and SEL to help the vibe of the work environment with my coworkers. Emotional resilience will help me overcome work set backs and I could also use my personal traits to reinforce a more productive way for myself to come back and reset the tone for myself. As far as my personal life, I believe that positive psychology, emotional resilience, social and emotional learning, academic/nutrition/ and wellbeing will help me. 

To share the information that I have gained from this semester, I plan to continue with looking up more articles that I used for social media post because it was extremely interesting to read those articles that I found. Like I mentioned earlier, I think that if I just continue to focus on myself and the plans I have written in my planner that those around me will also be able to see the changes I have made in my life. I’m not the biggest social media buff, but I probably would not use social media to share the information except for facebook.

I think the image that I selected is a perfect reputation for this course. Throughout the course, we discussed that happiness is not always going to be the same and it changes over time and over different situations. I think the progression of the faces helps to show that happiness is always going to vary when it comes to each and every individual. 

Final Blog Post

Final Blog Post

The biggest thread I have been able to create in this class and through all the different lessons it has taught me is that there is no shame and there shouldn’t be any stigma around the various troubles we as humans are all bound to face at some point-whether it be depression, anxiety, addiction, or more. This class has taught me that we are all capable of bettering ourselves, but that it must come from within; we have to want to change. As much as we can try and change someone and be there for them and be a support group, ultimately we are all the own captains of our ship. This has given me a great peace of mind and has helped me navigate through feelings of guilt or remorse when I feel like I am not doing enough to help someone out of whatever they’re going through.

I think the biggest lesson that I have taken away from this class is the power of resilience. It is the one lesson that can be applied to almost all aspects of life–it brings perspective and gives people the strength they need to push through whatever trials or tribulations they are going through. The lessons in class focusing around resilience caused me to be introspective and reflect on my life and what I’ve been through. I don’t think we as humans give ourselves enough credit for the strength we are capable of possessing and our our ability to persevere. This class has helped me to acknowledge this human trait which has given me a sense of empowerment and confidence to brace whatever comes my way. This class has also helped me tremendously with my anxiety. At the beginning of the semester, I was suffering from anxiety attacks that happened nearly once a day; it was taking over my life. Learning about the science behind this illness and knowing how many people suffer from it helped me gain perspective and also not beat myself up for not being able to get a hold on my emotions. It made me feel way less alone and I learned to teach myself that there is nothing wrong with the way that I am; it is simply something I have to be mindful of to be able to keep it under control better. The exercises we do in the beginning of the class centering mindfulness have been extremely beneficial to me and I have begun to implement a daily meditation session when I first wake up to start the day.

Learning about social media and the impact that it has is another large takeaway I have gained from this class. Doing my project and simply taking a week long break from posting on social media gave me a lot of time to decompress and address the real-life things going on. It seems pretty ironic, but I have begun to talk about the impact that social media has on our mental health on my twitter and instagram. I have reduced the amount of time that I spend on these apps and I want other people to be aware of how it is impacting their daily lives as well. I also have been trying to stay in touch with my friends and I think you can gain a lot of insight as to how they are feeling with the way that they are posting. Because of this, I have been trying to use the knowledge I have learned from this class and reach out to the people that I think could use a friend or use some guidance to get through hard times. I think this class has taught me a lot about empathy and how important it is to be there for other people.

I chose a photo of this tree because I think it speaks to the way everything is interconnected and how we will keep growing to a higher place. We have to properly nurture ourselves to continue to grow and reach our potential

 

BLOG POST 3 MCNELIS

BLOG POST 3 MCNELIS

Over the past few weeks, I’ve learned a lot about how to better use my time on this Earth.  I’ve learned about the importance that nutrition adds to a happy life. through the Eat, Sleep, Move exercise in which I tracked my food intake for a week.  After finishing tracking my food for a week, I reflected and analyzed the data as well as how I was feeling each day.  I noticed that I barely eat anything and most of the time I am feeling nervous or just bleak.  Rarely was there a day in which I noted feeling happy or great.  I think this is due to the fact that I was eating mostly small snacks just to stop feeling hunger and I was not including any proper balanced meals in my diet.  As somebody who typically follows a ketogenic diet,  I am a big advocate for low carb diets because carbs have never helped me in my fitness or mental health journey.  In fact, I notice on days that I eat carbs I feel strong symptoms of depression.   I also remembered our guest speaker that came in from the Cary Street Gym and talked to us about going to the gym and wellness.  I discovered that personally, I am one of those people who has to go to the gym and workout fairly rigorously in order to feel mentally healthy.  When I go days without exercising and eating junk food, I feel like I am at my lowest both mentally and physically.  I also find that I am under way more stress when I am not eating right and going to the gym.

Another topic that I found helpful was the substance abuse lecture.  This lecture actually inspired me to attend 3 different alcoholics anonymous sessions at the VCU Well.  First of all, I will say that the people at these meetings are very kind and accepting.  They had no idea why I was there, but they welcomed me with open arms.  The meetings were guided by a reader who spoke in a somewhat spiritual manner.  After that, everyone had to introduce themselves and then share personal testimonies or advice about staying sober.  Surprisingly, most of the people in the meetings had been sober for many weeks or months.  I had assumed that I was going to walk in there and see drunk people, but these people were actually quite successful.  There were people of all ages and backgrounds, not just VCU students.  I would recommend these meetings to anyone that wants to sober up from alcohol.  However, if you just want to cut down on your alcohol consumption and not completely sober up, I would not recommend these meetings, as they made it very clear that the meetings were for people who want to completely sober up only.  Making the decision to get clean from substances can relate back to our topic of resiliency.

I think the most important topic that I learned from these past few weeks was the link between social media use and mental health.  My group presented on this topic and discovered that social media use is in fact causing people to feel anxious and depressed.  I myself decided to stop using social media for a while and felt much more at ease and at peace with myself.  In the future, I don’t like I will be scrolling through my feed as much.  I also thought that putting my phone down helped me relate back to our lecture topic of connecting with nature.  Without my phone in my hand 24/7, I decided to use my time for better things like going on walks with my dog at Belle Isle, or going for 3 mile runs with my friend.  I even found myself leaving my phone at home a lot and not feeling anxious about it.

Finally, I chose this image to represent my thoughts on nature and improved wellness/mindfulness.

Image result for go outside

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiKv8_V6fXhAhUFjVkKHWjgAqQQjRx6BAgBEAU&url=https%3A%2F%2Fdribbble.com%2Fshots%2F274392-Go-Outside&psig=AOvVaw2quYC88zH2ogFg8FnK0ONw&ust=1556645236720219

“Know Thyself”

“Know Thyself”

During my time with this course, I have endured one of the more aggressive depressive states I have ever experienced in my life. As a result of some rather strong medication I often experience mood swings and depression around my menstrual cycle but this particular emotionally downfall is mostly due to stress at school and work. With that being said, being involved in this class has really opened my eyes to the severity of depression, the factors that can lead to depression and anxiety rises, and the way understanding yourself can bring a certain type of solace and security in your life. Understanding these insights put forth by our various topics, specifically positive psychology, the concept of grit in students, emotional resilience, cognitive biases, and our discussion of what exactly is happiness, really allowed me to put my own ideas of depression and sanity aside and conduct a further internal investigation on my own cognitive and mental health. These topics allowed me to analyze myself in order to confront some things, like anxiety and depression, that I am often too proud to admit or even notice. I have found that my increase in yoga, an activity recommended to us by many of our guest speakers, has really helped me calm down my mental state and harness meaningful skills like patience and thoughtfulness in order to help reverse and prevent a lot of the effects of depression like lack of motivation, fatigue, and hopelessness, of which I suffer greatly from during my stints of depression.

Considering all the great things I have grasped in this class like a better idea of who I am and how I behave, I can go forward into the professional world. Since I am very self-aware, I am able to actively gauge my emotions and thoughts in order to push myself when I know I am just feeling down, and to think positively and to push through. These next few years are going to be some of the hardest in my professional career and it is going reflect in both my personal and professional life. The skills I have retained from this class, like the 5 senses breathing exercise and the patience I have gained from committing to yoga, will help me during my darkest days to pull through and fight back. Going forward I need to focus on the long-lasting effects of mindfulness, like less stress and increased open-mindedness because although, my current activities are really making a difference I want to make sure they impact my life down the road to have long-lasting effects on my overall well-being.

As far as spreading the knowledge I have gained, I often like to retweet inspirational quotes, as well as sometimes creating #MotivationMonday posts on my Instagram and Snapchat stories, just because everyone needs a little boost sometimes and spreading positivity often directly improves mood. We have also spent some time collecting info for our final project via polling on Twitter, which is also a great way to help others realize they are not alone. These are all direct practices covered by our various guest speakers multiple times and so far, they have all been pretty spot on.

So the photo I have chosen really describes one of the most important, if not most important, thing I have learned from that class, and that was my love for yoga! I would never have thought that I would be so passionate about yoga, nor did I think it would make such a significant difference in my life, and that is all because of this very class! I was originally very turned off to truly committing myself to yoga, but after our daily mindfulness practices in class and hearing such praises from some of our speakers, I thought I would give it a try and I am really glad I did.

 

Yoga on mountain

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

Over the past couple months, this class has helped me develop some great life  skills that are going to help me down the road. I feel that this class has been a little bit different in the sense that it has been more relaxed and flexible when I am in class. What I mean by that is the exercises that we have planed for every class help me for my later classes in the day. I don’t think I have ever had a class benefit another class because most of the time other classes can hurt you because you have to focus on only one at a time.

The one main topic that we had talked about in the later weeks was mental health and how help others who are dealing with this issue. I thought that our first assignment was very interesting when we had to find a character trait that has passed down through our family. It was interesting to see how we are prone to certain things like mental health and see how it was passed down through the generations.The biggest concept I feel we have learned in this class in how to maintain our well being. Everything that we have done in this class has been related because it all called back to our well being.

I do plan on doing the exercises that i have learned in this class because i fell that they have helped me tremendously throughout the year not just in this class but for other classes as well. The breathing exercises help me the most because sometimes I just need to slow down and think and relax and reflect on the day and the day ahead. This exercise has not only helped with my school work but it helps when playing the sport I play everyday. Baseball can be very fast paced at times and I feel like that exercise helps me for later when I got to work on the baseball field. I hope that these skills that I have learned in this class will help me throughout my life.

I definitely plan to share this information with my close friends and family because i feel that it will be beneficial for them. I plan to continue to share articles that I find on social media that pertain to well being and being happy. This class really helps coping with stress and I suggest if you have dealt with stress in the pass to take this course at sometime during you years at VCU. VCU also has a great support system if you ever need help with mental health.

This picture shows that there is happiness in everyones life you just have to find your “Happy Place”. Happiness is important for everyone and everyone should find something that makes them happy and understand the science behind what makes them happy. I learned that happiness is an important part of well being and so you should do more things in your life that make you happy and keep you healthy.

 

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiShOvlofThAhWOTN8KHTJyAIQQjRx6BAgBEAU&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.thenextquarterly.com%2F2018%2F01%2F12%2Fhappiness-makes-the-world-go-round%2F&psig=AOvVaw2Q9F1DeL90wN1akBWD2LmM&ust=1556591614116691

Science of Happiness Final Blog

Science of Happiness Final Blog

This entire semester I was able to open my mind about what happiness really had the potential of being. I dove into all the different aspects of happiness and what it means to me. We learned mindfulness techniques in class that we practiced almost every day and that was a huge thing I took from this class. When I get really stressed and need to take a step back and relax I remember the breathing exercises we did during mindfulness meditation and it wholeheartedly calms me down. One specific exercise we did that really resonated with me and I know I will continue to do in the future is the eat, move, sleep journal. I only submitted the topic on “move” so I tracked my exercises but I actually did all three. In doing so I was able to uncover unhealthy eating and sleeping habits and figuring out when I needed to be more active. I also noticed which foods were changing my mood and making me sleepy so I adjusted my diet to fit my schedule and health goals, it was an amazing revelation. I also noticed how my body felt and carried itself depending on how much sleep I got and found I needed at least 6 hours to feel like myself. Overall this exercise showed me how much these 3 things are essential to happiness and above all feeling and being healthy. I am going to continue monitoring these three aspects in my mindfulness journal to stay on track to a healthy happier lifestyle because it’s amazing how much of a difference it can make.

 

I personally struggle a lot with self-concept and body appreciation. I figured out a lot of those negative feeling came from social media. When we did the disconnecting activity, I learned a lot of myself doubt and lack of appreciation came from constantly comparing myself to others on social media. The activity showed me how relaxing I can feel when that is lifted from my conscious. That is something I definitely want to engage in when I feel those feeling overwhelmingly. I really appreciate being able to do that and figure out where the negativity comes from and how to stop it.

 

I picked this picture because it makes me feel like what this class made me feel. Being happy starts with yourself and what you want to put in. Making decisions and going down paths to make you happy is a good and accessible thing. I learned that and now I’m going to implement it.

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

This past semester I was able to learn a lot about my physical, mental and emotional health. When I first enrolled into this class I honestly didn’t know what to except. Every week a new topic was introduced and a new speaker would come and educate us on a topic. Along with this we had weekly exercises that helped us apply some of the things that we learned that week. Some of the things that I learned consisted of understanding mental health and learning how to cope with the affects that come a long with it. I personally struggle with anxiety, so learning more about this topic really helped me understand my mental illness. When Dr. Bela Sood came to lecture our class, I learned a lot about the different types of anxiety and it’s triggers. She talked about how anxiety is one of the top leading mental illnesses among college students. Our weekly exercise for that week was to record our thoughts on different situations and how we overcame our negative thoughts, which was really helpful. I felt a lot happier when I was able to put my emotions into words. We also learned about mindfulness and the benefits behind some of the exercises. Almost every class we were able to do one minute of mindfulness and I can honestly say that this helped me in so many different ways. It overall helped relieve stress. Every time we did a mindfulness exercise, I felt a lot more focused and calm. For one hour I was able to shutout everything that didn’t matter. We also learned about the significance of nutrition and well-being as a college students. I was able to find new ways to eat a lot healthier, especially on a budget. Lastly, for my final project my group focused on positive psychology. During this time I was able to do a lot of research and the articles from our readings played a major role. The information provided was extremely useful and our group learned a lot. This project allowed us to give back to our community in a positive way and we couldn’t be more proud of ourselves. I’m so glad that I was able to enroll into this class because I learned so much about myself and I honestly wish that this class was a requirement for all students.

I have made many changes to my daily routine because of this class. Every week we were challenged to do something  that would ultimately lead to happiness. I have faced many obstacles throughout my life and I made a promise to love myself and to do things that benefited me and my happiness. The weekly exercises have definitely helped encourage me to implement the new strategies that I learned. I feel like I’m a lot more mindful of my emotions and others. With that being said, I’m teaching myself to be more emphatic towards others. I’m applying PERMA into my everyday life and it has definitely changed the way that I think and feel. I slowly started to ease my way into the gym. I currently go 3 days a week and would like to make it 5. I stopped eating out as much and started to cook healthier foods. I overall feel a lot better mentally, physically, and emotionally. However, something that I do struggle with is  social media and over using my phone. When I’m bored I tend to scroll a lot and I also watch a lot of pointless YouTube videos when I could be a lot more productive.  I often find myself re-downloading apps that I have deleted and I tend to check my phone multiple times throughout the day. Social media and my phone is like an escape from the real world and I use it as a form of distraction. In the future, I aim to cut back slowly that way I won’t be tempted to keep re-downloading these apps.

Everything that I learned in class I would share on my twitter and Instagram. I love the person that I am becoming and to share that with the world would be amazing. I started a positive poetry page on Instagram and I have been sharing wonderful tips that have helped me grow as a person. I also found myself sharing information learned in class with my friends. I show them videos and articles that relate to the topics that we talked about in class. Although I use social media a lot, the way that I use it has definitely changed. Every morning, I like to post a positive message on my Instagram story and I’ve been getting a lot of great feedback and that honestly means a lot. I aim to continue doing this in the future.

I chose this image because it basically shows what I learned this past semester. My ultimate goal in life is to be happy and to make a difference by spreading positivity. I’ve learned so much about how being positive and loving can affect someone’s day. Every morning we are blessed with a new day and it’s important that we take advantage of the time that we have on this earth by radiating  love and happiness.

Image link: https://www.actionforhappiness.org/about-us

 

 

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

The lessons I learned in this class is something I’m going to remember for a lifetime. I found myself getting really down last semester. My grades were slipping. Basketball wasn’t working out. I was going through it. I told myself that I wouldn’t let it happen this semester. Thanks to this class I was right. This semester was a complete turn around for me. I started this class and instantly I felt free. I was in a classroom with people just like me. I knew I wasn’t the only one going through something. Throughout the class, we touched on numerous things. The most meaningful topic for me was coping with depression. Depression drains my energy, hope, and drive, making it difficult to take the steps that will help me feel better. Overcoming depression isn’t quick or easy, but it is far from impossible. Getting the support I needed played an essential role in overcoming depression. It can be difficult to maintain a healthy perspective and sustain the effort required to beat depression. At the same time, the nature of depression makes it difficult to reach out for help. When I was depressed, I isolated myself from family and friends. I felt like they didn’t understand what I was going through and it was very difficult to talk to them. Over time I sought help for the better. My family and friends stuck by my side no matter what. To have caring people around me showed me that I wasn’t alone after all. I must say it was not easy but now I try to keep myself around positive people. 

I think for me studying mindfulness will help me in the future. Mindfulness can be defined as staying aware and conscious in the present moment. While it sounds simple, being mindful is not easy. It can take a great deal of practice to develop the ability to be conscious and connected in the present moment. I find myself managing so many different commitments (classes, sports, friends) at a time that I have a hard time staying focused without thinking about what I need to do next. On one of our weekly assignments, we had to practice mindfulness for a week. This was really helpful and I learned so much from it. The lessons I learned just from breathing and isolating myself is amazing and it is something that I’ll use for a lifetime. So if I find myself in a stressful situation or experiencing one of the many cognitive symptoms of depression, something as quick and simple as breathing exercises is just what I need to get back on track and through the day. 

I know social media is something everyone spends their time on. For me, it’ll be my pleasure to help someone who is dealing with depression or anything that’s bothering them. I know college isn’t easy, so for me to sit back and watch someone go through something so devastating would be wrong. The information I learned in this class can be very helpful to others. Whether it’s depression or not.  Helping people is important because it’s good to do good deeds for others. It’s good to help because it makes you feel good about yourself. Who doesn’t want to feel good about themselves? It’s basically a win-win situation. 

 

 

Image result for schoolin life

 

 

I chose this image because it explains life as we speak. All my life I’ve been letting school get the best of me. My stress level has grown over the years because of school. This time it’s my turn and I won’t let anything get in my way. Graduation is right around the corner and I must say I am proud of the person I have become. I would like to thank my professors, this class was extremely helpful.

SOH- Blog post #3

These past few weeks have given me a lot to build off of. I have had ups and downs that were unexpected but I have taken class discussions and started taking steps that so far have helped me stay in the right direction. We talked a lot about personality traits and recognizing them and how we can better improve / work with them. I know that I have many traits that I am proud to have but some others that I definitely need to work on. I had a huge reality check when I stopped self medicating, to explain a bit more, I don’t think I had an unhealthy relationship with what I was doing but once I was 100% sober, with the acceptance of a few beers or so here and there, I definitely got to see I a bit more of myself through a different lens. I have had friends and family struggle with addiction and substance abuse so I believe I can tell the difference between different types of situations. As I have talked about in previous postings, I grew up with anger issues that over the years I have learned to control and have improved immensely. I also use to have night terrors and crazy vivid dreams and even sleep paralysis that took a tole on my sleep, all the self meds did was help me sleep and even me out a bit. These past couple months have been quite rough, stopping cold turkey, my dreams have exploded in a way where I’m not sure if I went through the next day or if it was just a dream, I’ve had episodes of sleep paralysis that last 15 minutes, and I have found myself agitated when usually I can shrug it off. The addition of stress from classes and work and bad news from family and unfortunate events have been a true test to my resiliency.

Through this class I have learned a lot about mindfulness , positive relationships, and the positives of remaining active. When I find myself in an agitated state I take a step back, take a breath and run through my mind why I am feeling this way , what good will come from acting on it, and what I can do to keep it from happening again. While this might not be the perfect solution to all cases, it has helped me avoid some over reactions and stay on the right track. I feel like I couldn’t be more lucky in scoring the roommates I have, I feel as though I can talk to them about almost anything including any problems we have with each other. Though we may bump heads from time to time , I feel as though we have a brotherly comradery that we can hash out eventually and find some type of middle ground which I feel like can be difficult to find. I have also started biking almost every where I go and going to the gym at least 3 times a week. This helps we get rid of excess energy and pent up frustration which really does wonders , I also all around just feel better mentally and physically.

While my dreams, occasional sleep paralysis and sleeping are still a current issue, the combination of other changes I have introduced to my life thanks to this class has done wonders for my mental and physical health and well being. This has been a true test of my resiliency and I feel if I can bounce back from this, I can make it through many more challenges to come!

My image, I believe depicts what it may feel like to be in a time of struggle. But the green represents the fruits and beauty of resiliency. Nothing gives me a happier feeling than the color of natural green.

https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=&view=detailv2&id=D3762302A18DC0620E07686F5E840AB231358937&ccid=5oRvs9yX&iss=fav&FORM=SVIM01&idpview=singleimage&mediaurl=http%253a%252f%252fwww.ukas.co.uk%252fwp-content%252fuploads%252f2014%252f04%252fresilience.jpg&expw=1513&exph=1087&thid=OIP.5oRvs9yXAh0atzvoAfyQnQHaFU

 

 

blog post three

blog post three

Going from the beginning of this semester I feel a great start to figuring out how your body and personality related to happiness start with the strength survey. Figuring out what you do best and need to work on is the first step to applying the rest of these topics to becoming happy. If you know how you operate you can operate effectively. After you gt that down it is easy to help track what we talk about net which was automatic thoughts. This is the ability to experience something and realize what triggers you and why that happened and how to change it next time. Another main topic is exploring resilience. Knowing how resilient you can be allows you to stay confident when tings are not going your way and that can help you prevent stress and unpleasant feelings leading you to not get down on yourself. This is one topic that helped me lot. Another topic that  learned a lot from would be the disconnecting for 50 minutes each day. Getting away from something that consumes so much of your time is huge for relieving stress that it brings and allows you to think of other things and free your mind up to allow yourself to become more relaxed and at home which makes you feel better. The last major and impacted me the most was the topic of physical well being. This is a very broad but important topic, because it is always subject to change and self controlling. This topic makes you realize that no matter how bad you are in one moment, you can change it the moment after. Activity can promote better health and feeling better while eating right can help your body feel stronger and sleeping right helps you feel rested and all of these things promote each other because you will want to do everything when you have energy and feel great. So doing a little bit of all those allows an opportunity to help your self become healthy and happy. Some changes I’ve already made was keeping track of what I eat and making an effort to make them more  healthy. So far I feel way better with more energy and feel more clean and pure. I think it as made a great impact so far and I will continue to do so. Another thing I plan on applying in the future is the disconnecting from social media everyday. I think this will allow myself to free up my mind and focus on other things that can change my day and how I look out on life. One change that I have been doing but need to fix and make better would be the trusting and knowing my strengths and using them to allow myself to look at the other side of bad happenings and moving past them. Once class is over I still plan to post when I see something that relates to any of the topics that we have discussed. Along with I plan on trying to help anyone that is in need of information or help with issues, if friends or family have things going bad I plan to share information to help them along with recommending this class to others. One personal experience that has happened to me that this class has helped with was when I was going through a rough midterm section of classes I took a step back to breathe focus and restart. I used the method of my resilience and breathing methods to calm down and take it one step at a time. Our mindfulness exercise each day in class were very helpful as well as they helped my midday to become more relaxed and start new from earlier and this truly allowed me to take my days step by step.

Image result for happiness imagesOverall what I’ve learned in this class is that no matter the techniques or help or what happens to you, happiness comes within ad you always have control over it ad no one can stop you from having fun or being satisfied but yourself.

Blog 3

Blog 3

Looking back at the semester I am honestly not quite sure what I learned. One major take away is about which presentation styles appeal to me. This is my final semester of my undergrad so a majority of the information that was presented in the class I already knew. I think that a major goal of going over a variety of topics is to paint a picture that mental health is a complex puzzle that has many moving parts. I wish that students in the class would have participated more throughout the semester and I think that I would have had the opportunity to learn more. The topics that were most meaningful to me included the presentations on substance use and mindfulness. I think that we live in a world were SUD are so common and it is important to know about them. I also love the concept of mindfulness and the conversations I have had around it. In exploring and reading about mindfulness not only will you learn about different techniques on how to be mindful, you also have the chance to explore existential concepts such as identity and the self. Have you ever really thought about what the self is? This is also a really fun conversation to attempt to have with your friends because often everyone will have a different understanding of what the self is.  Unfortunately we only had a few days to explore these concepts so the presentations only explored them on a surface level.

This class did not inspire me to make any changes in my life. As I enter a professional job I would like to keep in mind the energy that I bring to the space. I think that it is important to bring a positive and happy energy into any space you are in. One of the lectures this semester was about happy people who surround themselves with happy people. I think this is true and I also think that energy attracts energy and that we should strive to be the energy we like to see in a space. Another take away is that you are the only person that is responsible for the energy that you bring to a space. You cannot control the energy and decisions of other people. I am working on maintaining a specific energy and not absorbing negative energy from people’s behavior and decisions that I am not responsible for.

Over the course of the semester I talked with my roommates about a few of the topics covered in the class. I am not sure how or if I plan on talking about the concepts in the future as who really knows what the future holds.

For the well assignment this semester I attended the well’s research to recovery conference. This was the first conference that I have ever been to. It was a lot of fun and they provided lunch for three days! My favorite speaker was Tom Hill, the surgeon general. He spoke about being gay, his road through recovery and a little bit about some accomplishments in his life. Although it was less informational based then the other presentations I though that his speech was very touching and inspiring. One of my supervisors in one of my internships is a friend of his and I think that I need to speak with her about getting into contact with him.

Image result for puzzle piece

I think that a puzzle piece best summarizes what I learned this semester as mental health is a puzzle with many different pieces that contribute.

 

Blog Post 3

Throughout the course of the semester, SOH has taught me a lot. Some main takeaways that I have learned from this class is first the power of forgiveness. Dr. Worthington discussed the power of forgiveness and how in such a tough and tragic situation he was able to forgive the person who killed his mother. This has taught me to try to forgive others who have hurt me. I have also learned how to boost my emotional wellbeing by staying off my smartphone and taking part in self-care. Although this is sometimes challenging, I find it helpful to find times off of my smartphone. This emotional wellbeing aspect relates to what was learned about getting outside more often and finding joy in nature because throughout the research shown, emotional wellbeing can be increased by spending more time outside and within nature. This class has also taught be the importance of getting quality sleep to boost by wellbeing as well. The weekly exercise with tracking my sleep was super helpful because I was able to become aware of how my sleep really affects me. To further my understanding of how sleep effects by wellbeing the article that we read in week 13 discusses the importance of sleep and academic wellbeing by looking at wake times and grade point averages. This made me realize that although sleep can be overlooked at times that it is vital to my overall and academic wellbeing.

I will personally apply these insights by putting up sticky notes to remind myself to spend time off of my phone, to go to bed earlier or to go outside that day. Some changes that I have already made have been to spend more time outside and eat a healthier diet. I did this at first because of what we learned in class and the research behind it and then I started doing it more recently just because it makes me feel better when I do those things. Changes that I still need to work on would be to putting my phone away more and spending less time on my phone because currently I feel like I spend a lot of time on it.

I plan to share the insights that I have gained from SOH with my personal network by trying to plan outside activities to spend with friends and tell them about some of the benefits that I have learned throughout the class relating to wellbeing. As far as sharing my information with my social media network, I plan to share information that I learned in this class through posts every once and awhile to share with others how to boost their happiness.

Lastly, I chose this picture because I believe it incorporates a lot of areas that we talked about this semester such as mindfulness, resilience and wellbeing.

Image result for emotional wellbeing

https://b-townyouth.co.uk/iag-pages/emotional-wellbeing/

Science of Happiness Blog Post 3

HOW SCIENCE OF HAPPINESS IMPACTED MY LIFE
Some major lessons that I learned over the course of this semester were the importance of self care and how to treat others with the same respect and kindness. Towards the end of the semester, we started talking a lot about personal well being and how it plays such a big role in contributing to your happiness and health. Something I never cared for doing was to get myself out into the world and enjoy the nature around myself and connect with other people on a deeper level. I really liked the lesson where we learned about how nature impacted a group of Japanese businessmen’s health. Now that the weather is becoming warmer, I want to challenge myself to be more outdoorsy and to just spend more time in the sun. Another interesting video we watched during one class was how people were healthier when they were more social (how in the Italian village, people lived in big homes were happier and healthier). I do feel like with the busy and fast paced lifestyles we are all living in now, it’s hard to stay connected and social with other people. I never realized how much of a difference it makes to be close to those around you and how much someone can impact your happiness and health. Ever since I started seeing that, I try to make an effort to call my parents more often, stay connected with my friends and significant other, and talk to my classmates and co-workers. Even when I don’t feel as social, I feel happy and not as distant to the people around me. I realize how much that changes others too. I could see how happy my parents get when I call them and how much easier it is to open up and communicate with them. I’ve always been a huge advocate for self love but now I want to also spread some of that to the people I love.
Some other lessons I could see that will make positive impacts on my life and well-being are the lessons on social media, healthy eating, healthy relationships, and mindfulness. I’ve always been mindful of what I see on social media and how much I use it and how I’ll let it impact my life but lately I’ve been caring less about how others perceive me through social media and I always try to remind myself that what I see on the internet is always the most polished version of someone else’s life and success. With social media, I stopped following influencers and have tried to follow more inspirational pages, art blogs, and designers and creators that can help me become more creative. I still try to limit how much I log onto Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. I use mindfulness to try and stay on tasks with the things I have to do and it helps me become way more productive. I have yet to completely fix my eating and sleeping habits but I have started to try and go to bed earlier and wake up earlier to make sure my entire day will be more fruitful. I realized that when I get up late, especially on weekends, I have the tendency to stay in bed and get really lazy. So now, I try to get up and do something to wake my body up.
I think making little changes like that really help improve my professional life (by making me more productive) and personal life (I feel happier when I get things done).
After class is over, I want to be able to share  these insights with my loved ones by just connecting to them and giving them advice and my experiences doing them. I already started talking about the things we watched in class and what we learned and they are very interested in those things. I don’t tend to put my advice through social media, I’d rather get personal with someone else if we are talking about topics that concern with someone’s well-being. But in the future, I do want to create a blog of some sort and share my thoughts and experiences to others on social media.
Image result for self care
I chose this image as part of this blog post because I feel like an important takeaway for me in this class is learning different ways to practice self care. I believe that self care isn’t just making sure you’re physically healthy and beautiful, it’s also about strengthening your mindset and resilience. Self care is about growing into a better version of yourself every day and applying your values to everything you do in your life. If you don’t have a purpose with the things you do and only do them in the name of “self care”, you won’t be able to connect with yourself and have a deeper understanding and acceptance of yourself. I believe that you can always improve yourself no matter how old or low you are. Even on days where you take a few steps back, as long as you continue to be better, everything will be okay. I also think that to have self care, you must have self discipline. You can try to eat healthy for a week or take care of yourself, but as soon as you break out of your cycle, you go back to old habits. Taking care of yourself require consistency. So I think self care is something you should do now and always, not just on bad days.

Blog Post #3- Mary C.

Blog Post #3- Mary C.

This semester some of the major things I learned were how to help others struggle with depression, the power of mindfulness, and how important maintaining your well being truly is. We talked a lot about mental health over the course of this class and how to help others who are struggling with mental health issues. Our first assignment in the class we mapped out a condition within our family tree. It was interesting to see how we are prone to certain things like depression and see how it was passed down through the generations. The mindfulness exercises we did in class were extremely helpful and I have begun to incorporate them into my everyday life. I find myself more calm and able to handle stress much better than I was before. The biggest concept I feel we have learned in this class in how to maintain our well being. We have done exercises like Eat, move, sleep, in order to show our current habits and then show how we can improve them in the lectures. The Trockel, Barnes, and Egget’s weekly reading proved very insightful to the exercise we did on Eat, move, sleep and proved that college students grade point average can be affected by their diet, sleep schedule, and exercise.

I plan to continue using these things I learned in my everyday life in the future. I love doing breathing exercises now in order to calm down when I get upset and just when I start feeling stressed out. The exercise where we put what is bothering us in an imaginary container and put it aside for the time being has also come in handy when I am at work. I can put all my worries in a container and come back to it later. I definitely want to use the skills I learned in our depression lectures to be able to talk to people I know with depression or other mental illnesses in order to get them the help they need without them feeling pressured. Another thing I want to use in my everyday life is being closer to nature. I love the lecture about being closer to nature and it decreasing stress levels and depression levels. I plan to use the lecture about PATH’s in elementary schools because I want to be an elementary school teacher and I feel like it is something I would really like to incorporate in my classes. I definitely still need to work on my exercising and eating healthier. I have worked on sleep improvement but I still need to work on exercising and eating to better improve my well being.

I definitely plan to share this information with the people I know in my life. I plan to continue to share articles online that pertain to well being and being happy. I want am going to continue to spread awareness about events that are happening at the Wellness Center at VCU and continue to attend classes and meetings there. Mindful Mondays were extremely helpful this semester in helping me to de-stress and relax. I just taught my mom about breathing exercises to help calm her down while she is at work. I tell my coworkers about things I learned in this class because I work at a massage studio and wellness is extremely important to us. We post a lot about our studio and the benefits massage has for our well being.

The reason I choose the photo I did is because happiness is different for everyone. For me, penguins are my happy place. Looking at penguins and thinking about penguins just makes me happy. For others, they need to go outside and be in nature, others need to be around friends and family. Happiness is important for everyone and everyone should find something that makes them happy and understand the science behind what makes them happy. I learned that happiness is an important part of well being and so you should do more things in your life that make you happy and keep you healthy.

https://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1SQJL_enUS780US780&biw=1366&bih=657&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=ORnGXPPMCuql_QbVhoXoBQ&q=happiness+penguin&oq=happiness+penguin&gs_l=img.3…9084.10442..10695…0.0..0.110.751.6j2……1….1..gws-wiz img…….0i67j0j0i5i30j0i8i30.dYfUPL9Md2k#imgrc=gLaGIlHs-SevXM:

 

Blog#3

Blog#3

I learned a lot this semester in the “SCIENCE OF HAPPINESS” class and now I want to tell you all this information and my feelings in this final post. I believe that the most important skill I learned for this class is that I began to understand myself better in different life situations and had a great experience how to be happy even in the worst situation. Because I am the only person who is responsible for making myself happy, and there are proven measures that will help all people achieve this goal. Self-knowledge begins with the simplest, it all begins with the satisfaction of my basic needs, such as sleep, food and exercise. Happiness in simple things. “Get to know yourself” is the advice that my parents gave me when I was little. Then I did not understand what they were talking about and did not want to think about it. Through lectures in the classroom, I learned a lot about myself. But this is a very difficult path, and it seems to me that I am only at the beginning of this path. At first it may seem that nothing is easier. In addition, we spend 24 hours a day with us. But it is so easy to go astray, to begin to perceive ourselves not as we are, but as we or those around us want to see. So we lose the idea of ​​reality. I also realized that things that others like do not have to like me, and vice versa. I found that the more honest I am with myself in everyday life, the happier I become. We must learn to admit our mistakes and accept faults, and not blame ourselves for who you are. The most popular way of knowing oneself is meditation. But this method is not for me, I have other options that I learned from the class.

The biggest influence this class has had on me is that now I really try to take care of my body. I try to eat right and sleep for 8-9 hours a day, because good health is happiness. Before, I often experienced stress, and did not understand why this was happening, it didn’t bother me much, but when I couldn’t sleep at night, I realized that I could not do it anymore. After a week of classroom lectures on how important it is to eat and sleep well, I decided to start a nutrition diary. It helped me, I realized that I was under stress, only because I was very poorly fed, and sometimes I ate only once a day.

Another great lesson for me is reducing my time on my phone, because technologies like smartphones make us unhappier. Thanks to lectures in the classroom, I realized that I was very dependent on technology. I noticed that I was worried if I didn’t have a wireless connection or was restless when the phone’s battery was sitting down, and it seemed unconsciously that something went wrong in your absence in the life of the Internet. I try to change myself, I accepted as a rule, I turn off the phone when I study or when I spend my free time with friends.

Thanks to “SCIENCE OF HAPPINESS” I understood a lot and learned a lot. I think that I am only at the beginning of my journey, but I know that I want to go through it and get to know myself even better. I also want to share my knowledge and experience gained in class with my family and friends, so that they can go this way with me and be happy.

I chose this picture, in my opinion, best sums up what I learned this semester, because I realized that I want to be happy and make the people around me happy. Thanks to “SCIENCE OF HAPPINESS, I know how to do it!

Teen Mental Health and Well-Being. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.stressedteens.com/teen-mental-health-and-wellbeing

SOH Blog Post #3 Final

SOH Blog Post #3 Final

Throughout the entire spring semester, I’ve came to the conclusion that happiness is a very complex process. By this I mean, happiness isn’t just the state of being happy, it requires the state of active participation and it is accompanied by concepts like sleep, diet/nutrition, physical well-being, and acknowledgement of one’s personal cognitive biases and traits. I feel like acknowledging that happiness is complex is one of the greatest lessons I’ve learned from class because I see the world suffering, we have mental health issues rising, technology advancing, and social media promoting the meaningless content. If we were all to acknowledge the fact that we can all be happy but it takes active participation within a complex process from us all to get it done.

Some of the smaller topics that helped me form this insight would include: sleep, diet/nutrition, resilience, physical well-being, personal cognitive biases and traits. If you think about it, happiness requires a slice of each of the topics I just listed, a healthy sleep schedule, healthy eating schedule, eating healthy foods, exercising to promote physical health, well-being, and self-exploration of one’s traits is a healthy lifestyle for one to feel happy. This is why I find happiness so complex, some people don’t realize all the work it takes to become happy. For example, from personal experience I have seen friends slack off, sleep at unearthly times, barely eat, and never went to the gym/tried to exercise ever and complain why they are in such a negative mood, this shows the paradox within happiness. I’ve seen my friends even acknowledge the fact that they continue to do all these unhealthy habits, complain about them, and continue to do so without trying to change something in their routine to help their health and well-being.

Some of the concepts that stuck out to me the most in class and what I found most meaningful were emotional resilience and substance use. I pray this to all my friends, I find resilience to be one of the most important and most useful skills to have anywhere, adapting to situations, work ethic, and emotional stability. I feel like I pride myself on the resilience I have built throughout my life, which is why I find it so important to the human race because this concept must be built, it does not come naturally. I just find it to be such an intricate concept because it plays out in so many everyday situations like in the workplace or combating with mental health. The other concept that stuck out to me was substance use, our guest speaker on opioid addiction really stuck with me because it’s something I have seen personally from some family members of mine. Substance use and recovery can draw so much emotional out of us and it takes so much to be able to talk about it with others, which I give much respect in that guest speaker. For our group project, we chose substance use because our group found it all relatable to our personal lives which is why this concept stuck with me. We all know someone who has substance use problems, some may acknowledge it, some won’t and this shouldn’t be a norm in our society, this rise of substance use has been immensely rising since 2002 and there needs to be more awareness about it to combat against it. Also, I found substance use so meaningful because in our group project, we listed a variety of recovery services to go to in the Richmond area and I had the pleasure to attend one of the anonymous events. This event was post by the Well here at VCU, and one of the key takeaway messages was the fact that we are all our own unique individuals, but we shouldn’t be selfish to one another, we can help one another and create a happier earth for all others to enjoy. Another message was the fact that recovery and substance use can be very emotional, which can drag people down and this creates negative externalities.

Throughout the semester, I’ve tried to spread my knowledge from class to friends when we’re just hanging out because I find it important to spread awareness and positive messages to our social network of friends and family. If I have a friend that needs to talk to me about their emotional/physical well-being, I use the topics from class to help push them in a better direction which is something I appreciate from this class. As a psychology major, the entire set of topics is something that builds happiness and this information can help me in the future when it comes to counseling others, and spreading a positive message to those in need. An example of this can be found in my workplace, whenever we are very busy, some of my coworkers tend to slow down or get really nervous but I like to give them some positive messages like, “hey calm down, we will get through this”, “just breathe and take your time you got this”, and “keep up the good work, you’re doing well.” I find that spreading these positive comments can really influence someone to push themselves in a workplace setting and this was all learned in class! I plan to continue to use these positive messages to help create a healthy setting at work and create healthier friendships, also it can help me if I ever follow a therapist path with my major.

Some changes I’ve already made in my life is attempting to eat healthier, manage my timing of meals better, exercising, and physical well-being. I found my diet and planning of meals was very poor before the semester, but in our lectures about diet/nutrition, I’ve learned that food plays such an important role in our state of well-being, this was also included in two of my psychology classes that I am currently taking as well. I planned to create a healthier diet for myself because I see how much more energy I have when I eat healthier and time the meals well, it helps me when I need to go study at the library for a long time or before I head into work for a shift. I also chose to ride my bike to work to help promote my physical well-being and to exercise more, I did this to include more exercising in my life because I compare this stage to stages when I was in high school. During high school, I was playing 2 sports and during off season, we would all be lifting but that routine faded away when I got to VCU. This was important because in high school I was very active, which made me feel better about myself and put me in more positive moods.  I found biking to work very positive for my well-being because it makes me feel worthy about myself when I go in to work or when I get home, or maybe it could just be the runners high. Something I continue to work on is my sleep schedule, I am notorious for having a poor sleep schedule, and I try to fix it but I just stress about too many things. Growing up, I found sleep to be more relevant and important each year as I progressed. It’s such an intricate concept because of our bodies sleep rhythms and patterns, heading to bed at late times usually puts me in a negative mood and this is something I can barely avoid because I have difficulty putting myself to sleep. I compare this to high school as well, in high school I would go to bed around 10:00-11:00, and wake up at 6:00 AM, and I was very active, had great energy, and got so much work done. But comparing this to my career in college, it is very different, here I find it impossible to wake up at 6:00 AM to do school work, I find myself yawning and getting tired during my first lectures of the day, and I find myself staying up late socializing when I would be better off in bed.

The information that I have learned from class will be promoted on one of my Instagram accounts, I tend to use one of my accounts for creative posts, motivational quotes, and art. I started this account back in 2016 because I wanted to post about mental health, awareness of oneself, and resilience, to this day I continue to post positive messages to my friends to give them a smile. After class is over, I will continue to post my motivating images because from lecture, we got to examine the chart of social networks, happy people are always with happy and sad people are accompanied with other sad folks, my message is to spread a positive message to my friends so we can all build a healthier social network for everyone included. For my own personal network, I will continue to write down motivating quotes and spread them to friends to help them out.

For the image, I chose this one because I find the message very positive in a healthy way. We are all our own unique individuals, we control ourselves and we make our own decisions so I find it very true that we tend to live most of our life inside of our head because we are always constantly thinking about our lives and what is to come. We need to create a healthy environment for our brain because it’s going to control our mental/physical well-being, and we can create this from the various topics from class: diet, sleep, nutrition, personal traits, resilience, and well-being. If we were to acknowledge the fact that we all live most of our lives inside our heads, maybe we can all come together to create a healthier mental environment for all of us. I also find the message in the image to be very essential because it speaks that we shouldn’t be holding our head down when we feel regressed, if we are living our unique lives inside of our head, then we need to be treating it healthier! I find that the image posted is a great and constructive summary of the entire class of Science of Happiness and the concept of happiness in general, we need to treat ourselves better because our brain will repay us! All in all, the concept of happiness is an intricate, yet complex process, it is not impossible to achieve but it requires an active participation and numerous subjects which involve mental health.

Blog post #3

Over this semester I have learned a lot about my self and how to deal with some situations I might be in or how to help friends and family if they are in a situation. I also learned a lot about the resources here on campus. I liked the tests we did about ourselves because this showed things I didn’t know about myself but also confirmed things I already knew. One major lesson I have learned this semester is that it’s okay to ask for help. You are not the only one struggling and support and help will make problems solve faster. If you don’t want to talk about it with people you know, because it’s embarrassing there are many other anonymous options. I also became aware of all the extra tasks that come with social media and smartphone use and I am trying to stay off as much as possible. The informative lectures we had at the beginning of the semester helped me to understand how events that happen in our lives can affect our mental and physical well being. The topics that were most meaningful to me were the relationship with substances, forgiveness and interpersonal relationships.

Because of the knowledge, I have gained throughout this semester it will be easier to recognize possible signs and avoid dangerous situations. I started to let things go sooner and not waste my time on it. Also, I started to share my knowledge with my friends and family. I have been trying to limit my time on social media and to take a break from everything when I feel like I need it.  Changes I could work on is my relationship with alcohol, I feel like I can achieve more without alcohol and really want to focus on school and soccer but when all of my friends go out and drink the temptation is high.

I plan to share our infographic with my social network through both social media and face to face. I also plan to share my knowledge with people when I feel like they need it.

I think this image best represents the class because we need to train our brain and our brain needs to be strong enough to deal with unfortunate happenings. Also, our brain is I think the most important of our whole body and we need to realize this and take care of ourselves.

Image result for mental health is important

SOH Final Blog #3 (Sharon Kwon)

SOH Final Blog #3 (Sharon Kwon)

Whether it is having trouble eating healthy, struggling with screen use, and being successful in social settings (and in academic settings), etc. We find that overall we owe it to ourselves to be informed and see what resources are available because in the end it affects YOU. I’ve learned that every topic that’s been presented in this class thus far varies but it all goes back to you as an individual, your future self if you continue (whatever bad habits or if you don’t invest in things such as being “mindful”), and also how it affects the people around you- family, friends, and social group. One of the major lessons for me personally was Exploring Resiliency and practicing Daily Mindfulness. I didn’t personally relate to the digital portion however, overall when Nina Schroeder’s presentation went into Emotional Resilience it gave me a chance (especially through the weekly activity) to take out a portion of my “nonexistent” time as a busy student to reflect on myself. The ability to cope from major and daily challenges that life presents in order to (coming back again to) further enhance your well-being so you can flourish and protect yourself from serious negative outcomes (such as depression and severe anxiety.) Also, to continue with anxiety I remember in class how we clarified that it’s extremely normal and not exactly a bad thing to be anxious.. and to me that was surprisingly mind-blowing. I used to have severe anxiety that came after being diagnosed with clinical depression in high school to the point where my face was always red and I always felt trouble breathing. Now that I don’t have it as bad I see it that whenever I feel or sense the anxiety in my body (from stress from school, life events, work, etc) I saw it as an automatic red flag and would immediately shut down. At the moment it seemed painful and straight up scary but, I realized that I have and still am overcoming it (with resilience!) Also, more or so I learned that it’s okay and that small amounts of anxiety is there to be a motivator or your body’s way of signaling the importance of whatever is “bothering you” or needs to be addressed. That weeks activity alongside with the Daily Mindfulness practice was meaningful to me because I realized overall that I make too many excuses. Recording either how I feel or setting aside a certain amount of time to myself seemed like a luxury and/or a “waste of time.” I always made excuses that I was to busy and these simple acts and reflections is to enhance MY overall wellbeing yet, we choose to fast forward and let the days pass.

I think like most things I’d have to commit to myself first before reaching out to others and for the immediate future and beyond it requires me practicing it daily so it’ll become less of a habit but, a lifestyle in the long run. I think it’s wiser to take it one at a time so one insight form this class, such as healthy eating, you can start out small by first mixing what you normally eat with a side of veggies and fruits on the side and progress it to replacing certain items with grains, protein, etc. Therefore, your life not revolving around extreme diets or an unhappy plate for dinner but, implementing what you know your body needs and conjoining it for a longer life. For professional settings, Katherine Ross spoke of Social and Emotional wellbeing and the presentation specifically speaks on skills to be successful in life and in the workplace. The skills ranging from ability to work in a team structure and to plan, organize, and prioritize work. Which these abilities we’ve learned and can apply!! Which is self-management, social awareness, and overall relationship skills. The first change I’ve made is journaling. Whether it be small to large (what I ate today to how I felt) I’ve jotted a daily journal so I can be present and mindful what I’m doing. I made this change because I’m the type of person who doesn’t even look at the clock (unless needed) throughout the day so it’ll go faster. Also, I work full-time while also being a full-time student so I barely make time to invest and reflect on myself. I have a lot to work on still, I definitely focus on others (people-pleasing) and zero effort on myself and found it to be affecting my emotions, thoughts, and how I value myself. A change starting from small could be being more open with myself and others and by being self-aware seek comfort and help when needed instead of putting it on the back burner.

Like I mentioned before I rarely use social media and one of the reasons actually is because I’m scared of how people may perceive me if I openly shared my thoughts, photos, and personal life. So, to share the information I’ve learned in this class without looking like I’m forcefully posting for an assignment would be by posting something that has actual meaning and impact on my life- Depression. Maybe I don’t have to do a whole “coming-out” emotional post but, something to make us all as individuals who have and are struggling can relate to. Example would be a screenshot of this 90’s Korean ballad song that hold dear to my heart and write on how this is one of the simple reasons why I want to live to see another day. So that I can hear this song one more time (in connection with depression/suicidal thoughts.)

 

I know this may seem like i’m talking about “me, me, me” but, in all honesty I learned the most about self-investment and self-love in this class. Like i mentioned above, the topics such as an unhealthy diets, being self-aware of what motivates or stresses you, and the matter of having the resources you need to better yourself and your environment is all in your hands and by your effort. Which really doesn’t take that much of your time nor requires you take big leaps such as seek professional help or completely get rid of your phone. Small steps, practice, and patience!

I am her, she is me

I am her, she is me

As I’ve been saying this entire semester, I’ve really enjoyed this class. Its been so beneficial to me and my wellbeing. I’ve learned so much from mindfulness exercises to tips on how to improve your resilience. The thing that has had the most impact on me were the mindfulness exercises. It was so interesting to learn that just by simply controlling your breathing can calm to you down and allow you to ground yourself. I made it my mission to share what I learned to help people in my life so they would have a way to help themselves stay grounded regardless of the situation. I literally recommend mindfulness exercises to everyone.

Another topic I really enjoyed was strengthening your resilience. Things are always bound to happen whether you have control or not. But one this is for certain; you can control how you respond and allow it to affect you. I believe this topic is so important, because some people focus on coping and management of different issues rather than trying to prevent them altogether. I learn so many things about myself from this topic. I learn my strengths and my weakness that I want to work on to improve my resilience.

I plan to share and implement the information I learn form this class. Again, I learn so much about how other people are and about myself. Before this class I was already the person who like to share “growth gems” on social media, which are just anything I believe people would benefit from by reading it. Ranging from physical to emotional tips. I plan to continue doing that, but now I have a bit more science behind what I am saying. Also, my friends and family already know majority of what I learn because I love to share useful information. But as I meet new people with different problems, I will use this class and what I learned to help them in the best way possible. Also, I strongly believe this class should be mandatory for incoming freshman, to help them to adjust to the college life.

This picture represents all the information all the information that I’ve acquired form this class and how it had helped me grow as a person.

SOH Blog Post 3- Reflection

SOH Blog Post 3- Reflection

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Over the course of the semester, I’ve learned so much about myself. Through the weekly activities, my responses to survey questions, etc. I’ve learned about the goals I have wanted to set for myself such as getting on a healthier diet, exercising more, altering my sleep schedule, social media use, and time management.

The presenters have brought up topics that I believe everyone could relate to and learn from. They have shown us that everyone isn’t perfect and its okay not to be, and that there is a science behind it all.

After this course, I have been made aware of habits that I practice that I’d like to do away with such as the amount of time I use towards social media. I have often become frustrated with myself for having to rush to complete assignments and then I remember where I put my free time.

The diet and physical fitness presentations were two of the most significant for me because I have always wanted to improve in those areas. They provided us with useful information and resources that we can further use to educate ourselves which I really appreciated.

Since then, I have already began eating more fruits and vegetable and drinking more water. With these changes I have already noticed a change in my wellness. I’m someone who is frequently nauseas, mostly due to low iron; so, I can only imagine the outcome when other adjustments are made. Exercise is still a work in progress, I’m still making excuses about the heat and my lack of energy and time at the moment …

In regards to social media, this week the new avengers movie came out and because I was only able to get tickets for Sunday, that left me with about two days of spoilers to avoid. So to deal with that, I been limiting myself to Youtube and Snapchat, completely cutting out Facebook and Instagram. It has been somewhat difficult but in that time I’ve gotten more work done and busied myself with other activities like going outside and spending time with friends.

When I feel good about myself and my appearance I usually post on social media, so I guess on those days I’ll insert a motivational caption or a small sentence of something I’ve done that day for example, “just went jogging, I feel great.” It hasn’t happened yet but I can dream ????

This image accurately reflects what I’ve gained over the semester. With the coaching and affirmations from the presenters and professors, I feel like I can accomplish all that I want to. I understand myself a little deeper and I’ve grown to hold myself accountable.

image citation: https://www.bing.com/images/search?view=detailV2&id=7F90494BA9B0E1B837765B4C94FE530F3F29ED2D&thid=OIP.Mu2BDBh1fr0G_tlfiOJQ_QAAAA&mediaurl=https%3A%2F%2Fpbs.twimg.com%2Fprofile_images%2F700005868201443329%2FXMx28DRs.png&exph=400&expw=400&q=insight+clipart&selectedindex=19&ajaxhist=0&vt=0&eim=1,2,6

Blog Post 3

Blog Post 3

When I first signed up for this class I didn’t know what to expect, but There was a lot of content from the course of this semester, from weekly readings, to daily activities in classes,group projects, and so much more. One of the things that really stuck out to me in class was doing the final project and actually learning and finding resources pertaining to our topic.  I felt like I learned so many things about depression and how everything correlated to the class on what we had been talking about for months. I guess it finally clicked. I also got to meet and connect with people who have or were feeling the sam way I did which is why we all chose the topic.

Overall, alot of the things that we learned in class day by day I started to apply it to my everyday life. The more I grasped and understood the more in became routine in my life, and I will continue to keep it going. A lot of people really don’t know the significance and how big of a role mental health has on us, being in this class not only allowed me to learn so many things regarding mental health, self awareness,mindfulness but it allowed the people that are involved in my life experience it through me. So I want to give a big thank you for this class, because it was more than just a class to me, it was healing for my soul.

Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

One of the major lessons I have learned in this class is a healthier lifestyle is different for everybody. VCUDine Registered Dietitian, Erin Thornton, discussed mindful eating, balanced eating patterns, grocery shopping, and the individualized approach. The individualized approach involves the idea that eating patterns must be altered to fit one’s lifestyle, personal preferences, and budget constraints. In other words, there is no right way to diet or exercise. You must adapt to a lifestyle that makes you feel happy and confident. It is imperative to not emulate society’s version of a perfect individual because it is very unrealistic. To this main topic I associate emotional well-being in the digital age. LCSW, Nina Schroder, gave a presentation on recent mental health trends, screen use impacts, digital age stressors, emotional resilience & well-being key factors, and benefits of less screen time. A digital detox can lead to less procrastination, loneliness, depression, anxiety, and more happiness & life satisfaction. The exercise that coincided with this lecture was the week 10 exercise, “Emotional Resilience in the Digital Age.” In this exercise, we had to disconnect from social media and our phones for 50 minutes during class time. The success of this exercise led me to repeat it on my own for a week’s time. Another major lesson that I have learned in this class is well-being involves social interaction of some sort. In the article, Social Interactions and Well-Being: The Surprising Power of Weak Ties, Sandstrom & Dunn reveal that weak ties with individuals you have less frequent contact have important benefits. The results of their study indicate that our interactions with acquaintances can lead to greater feelings of happiness, well-being, and belonging. The fact of the matter is all individuals have the desire to belong, whether we want to admit it or not.

The topics that were most meaningful to me were forgiveness and relationships with substances. Forgiveness was the primary topic of Dr. Worthington’s lecture and of all the lectures given this semester, his was my favorite. Forgiving others who have harmed me is never easy, but Dr. Worthington’s testimony made me reconsider my stubbornness. I have learned that I need to learn to forgive others with decisional & emotional forgiveness. However, I am not putting a timeline on this process. The relationships with substances topic is important to me because many of my family members have addictions. For some, the addiction goes unnoticed because it is just a norm of their surroundings. I have found a connection with this in the article, Annual Research Review: On the developmental neuropsychology of substance use disorders, by Conrod & Nikolaou. They proposed that there are three domains of risk: environmental, individual, and genetic/biological. Social influences affect the age starting drug use and the frequency of consumption. Alcohol abuse & dependence is something that is deeply rooted in my family and I hope to end this vicious cycle.

I will commit to applying these insights in my personal life by eating healthier and exercising more throughout the week. Currently, my eating patterns are not beneficial to my health and neither is my exercise schedule. For so long, I have tried to compare myself to others and not seeing the progress that I desire has discouraged me. But no longer will I try to live up to society’s standards. It is time for me to run my own race. In my Wellness Plan given to us by Wellness Coordinator, Carrie Baines, I saw that the main dimension that I need to work on is physical wellness. The barriers that I face are procrastination, laziness, and time management issues. The short-term goals would be to limit my dessert & pasta intake, exercise for 30 minutes per day, eat in moderation, and sneak in vegetables to my meals. My long-term goals are to lose weight and eat more vegetables. One of the changes I have made in my personal and professional life is the decreased use of social media. Not only do I feel happier overall, I am able to focus more on my studies. School is my professional life as of right now, and I am proud of the changes that I have made to be successful in my college career.

I plan to share information that I’ve learned in class with my followers on social media by giving them compliments on their posts. As we have learned in class, the act of giving provides benefits not only for the receiver, but for the giver. The power of giving is often taken for granted and I want to help end that. Additionally, I plan to share information that I’ve learned and insight I’ve gained, in my personal network by telling my family members & friends about the benefits of digital detox, positive psychology, and emotional resilience.

For my last Wellness Event, I am going to attend the 21st Birthday Program. I will have a safety-planning information session with a staff member at The Well. I could not participate in this program before because it was too far away from my 21st birthday.

I chose this image because the saying “Hakuna Matata” has always been a resonating phrase in my life since my early childhood. As we all know, it means no worries for the rest of our days. This class has taught me to find happiness in mindfulness practices, a healthy lifestyle, academics, etc. Worry only adds havoc to life. So, let’s all practice “Hakuna Matata” in our daily lives!

Image Citation: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hakuna_Matata_(%C3%BCbersetzt-_Keine_Sorgen)_2014-03-29_11-27.jpg

Nutrition

Individuals making the transition from high school to college are going to experience significant changes in their dietary options which can cause health problems. First-year college students are likely to experience an increase in weight when they become independent, commonly known as the “freshman 15”. Due to high tuition costs and high cost of living, it can be difficult for students to maintain a healthy weight due to the inability to afford nutritious food. Lack of nutrition can put your academic performance, physical and mental health at risk. Personally, I have struggled with my nutrition and diet so I found this class beneficial.

People are on a budget are more likely to choose the cheap, unhealthy option over the expensive, healthy option. We would rather suffer through the pain in our stomachs than the pain in our wallet. As a college student taking 18 credits and working part-time, I’m always on the go which makes it very difficult to find time to eat. I have the issue with buying healthy food and eventually having to throw it away because I can never find the time to cook it. I developed an extremely poor eating pattern throughout my college years. I eat 1-2 times a day When I do eat, it is unhealthy portions of unhealthy options at an unhealthy pace. I find myself eating so quickly because my stomach is starving and after about 15 minutes it all hits me at once causing me to experience tremendous pain. This causes my body to store the unhealthy foods for energy which can cause us to feel lazy and bloated.

During this lesson I learned which grocery stores sold bulk items and went to Lidl after class. I informed my friends, family, and my Snapchat friends of the affordable bulk prices offered at specific grocery stores. I had a couple people reach out to me and thank me for sharing this information with them. Prior to going to the grocery store, I made a grocery list so that I didn’t buy unnecessary items and give in to unhealthy options. As I was making the grocery list, I was being mindful of the unit prices when comparing products. When I got home, I instantly meal prepped all of my lunch and dinner meals for the next 3 days to prevent myself from skipping any meals. As I was meal prepping, I followed the “Choose My Plate” diagram that was presented in class to balance out each of my meals. As I was eating my food I used mindful eating tip to eat with intention and attention to our physical cues instead of emotional cues. To prevent myself from overeating, I started eating slower and rating my hunger to focus on the physical cues. I found myself more awake and aware, in a much better mood.

Healthy eating doesn’t need to be complicated!

SOH Blog Post

SOH Blog Post

 

This class has really helped me understand myself and how thing can affect me. This class has opened my eyes to a new way of thinking and has given me a way to positively change my attitude for my environment. I have learned about myself using the GRIT scale and the VIA Strengths survey. The Grit scale showed me that I have grit and resilience and the VIA strengths scale showed me that I have strengths in certain areas that can help me better my career and relationships. It also showed me things that I’m not very strong in and is something I can work on. The weekly exercises that we did felt like good mental checks. They always made you stop and think about how you were feeling and how your actions and environment could affect you. Through these exercises, I found what my biggest stressors were and the Eat, Sleep, Move log helped me realize what my sleep schedule actually meant. I already had a sleep log on my phone that was extremely accurate due to it track the movement of the phone, but this exercise actually helped me analyze what I did on certain days that caused my sleep to not be ideal.

The exercise that really opened my eyes was deleting all of my social media for a couple of days. I realize that I only look at my social media when I’m bored because I saw it as a time waster. I never post so I literally just scroll to have something to do. I realize that I actually spend most of my time on youtube so I decided to delete that too. I started reading more during the lulls in my day that would normally be filled with mindless scrolling. I enjoyed the extra time. I realized I would waste so much time because social media made time go by faster. I was Enjoying those minutes in the morning that I have while getting up for practice. I actually had more time to sleep because I went to bed sooner and could wake up later because I didn’t have to make space for getting lost in social media in the morning. It was really hard and as soon as I was able to I reinstalled the apps back. It was a good break and maybe a social media detox every once in a while would be good for everyone.

I decided on this picture because I believe it is very true. we are so aware of our phone, where it is, whats the battery percentage that we forget to think of ourselves and if we’re tired and how we are. I have literally seen people distance themselves from fun and interacting with loved ones just to sit by a wall by themselves to charge their phone. they have a fear of missing out but are actually missing out on things that matter.

 

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiyuuXw2OzhAhWLdd8KHYUxC7YQjRx6BAgBEAU&url=https%3A%2F%2Fredfairyproject.com%2F2017%2F08%2Ftake-time-recharge%2F&psig=AOvVaw3oNIsRCV1r7m8imNIYAE4G&ust=1556331484546017
Blog Post #3

Blog Post #3

Throughout the semester we’ve learned countless life lessons that promotes both our own and other’s wellness and happiness. Starting with the more self-care oriented where we focused on how happiness and the varying aspects of our lives can have a huge impact on ourselves holistically. We gradually branched out so that once we learned the significance and science behind a happy life for ourselves, we could hopefully apply that knowledge and spread it out to influence others. One of the smaller topics that I really connected with was how everyone defined happiness and how it was on a spectrum. How we are not fully defined by these labels that help us conceptualize others’ state of being. Another one was how our personality can change and we can improve how we cope with stressors by substituting our maladaptive behaviors with healthy ones. Or how the malleable theory is shown to be teachable and we can be happy being motivated to learn, dedicated to accomplishing challenging feats and growing from failures.

One of the most meaningful topics that had been taught throughout class was the lecture about forgiveness by Dr. Worthington. The way he presented his life’s story and conveying the others’ tales where many would wish the suffering upon the other individual. The lecture really shows how difficult one’s ability to forgive can be when you feel those emotions of loss, anger, and injustice. How it is easier to dehumanize the other person and hate rather than to forgive, not just for the other person for ending up in that situation as they live their own lives, but for ourselves so we can be free from this burden. Another topic was about our strengths and how we should see the list as not what our weaknesses are, but the varying degrees of which we have a tendency to act upon.

Because I want to be in a position where I could help others become independent and aware of how their actions impact those around them. I aspire to give them the tools and skills that can make themselves and those around them happy. For example when learning about our resiliency to adversities and neural plasticity that can show how adaptive we are to our ever-changing environment. Personally, I already committed to trying to sleep earlier and will continue working with changes to my physical health. From studies like the Demirci, Akgonul, and Akpinar (2016) which demonstrated how one’s excessive smartphone use can drastically impact our lives negatively. To Erin Thornton who guided us through various ways we could reasonably and affordably eat healthier. I believe that I can gradually make adjustments to live a happier and healthier life.

Unfortunately, I do not use social media at all really, just to stay connected and message people when I have something to share or be there with them. But personally, I will use what I know and reach out to the friends and family members who have been dealing with a lot of hardships lately and hopefully be a pillar of support, guiding them through the various ways they can face and accept these adversities. I could also spread it to my relative who works in a teaching position to implement with her class or to my younger cousins who can spread the awareness with their peer group.

As cliche as this sounds I feel like this semester we have gained more insight on how complex yet simple everything is. It’s common knowledge that if we eat right, stay active, and be a healthy individual you would expect to live a happy life. But because this existence we live in is so beautifully flawed, we live unique lives without own experiences, perspectives, and beliefs. There is a limitless possibility of how we live our lives and how we define our reason to live. Happiness is a variety of concepts for everyone. Whether it is the feeling of peace when taking a trip to just relax and have no worries in the world. Whether it is the feeling of helping others and making such a huge life-changing impact on their life because of one act of kindness. Or whether it is the feeling of being remembered in your old years after all you have dedicated into the younger generation and being appreciated, not forgotten as the time passes.

This picture itself has a variety of meaning for everyone. It could be as abstract as the journey of life where we learn from the past, explore the present and aspire to the boundless future. It could be the illustration of the hardships we face, taking a step forward as we face ruin, innovate from failure, and proceed with our accomplishments. It could even just be seen as how for happiness we need to acknowledge what is weighing us down, leaving these burdens behind, and take the meaningful strides towards the light that guides us in the night. Appreciating ourselves and others as we all pursue happiness and satisfaction in lives. Well personally, it also shows how small we are in the scheme of things, how we are all living beings sharing this life with others. How each of our lives is as valuable as the one beside us and how miraculous everything is with even just the statistics of us being the one born and surviving till now being awe-inspiring.

Img URls:

https://i.pinimg.com/564x/6d/2e/a8/6d2ea876fe5e1b01e53a374296f05295.jpg

http://inn.spb.ru/images/200/DSC100215534.jpg

SOH Final Blog Post

SOH Final Blog Post

The main lesson for me in this class was that true happiness starts within yourself. When I first started this class, I thought each class would be a different coping technique for depression so you can be happy. Although we did learn techniques, I learned more about myself. Smaller topics such as the VIA strengths survey taught me about my strengths, which came at a great time because I was at that time, I didn’t think I was good at anything and was searching for any talent that I had. When I took the survey, it reassured me that I do have talents and some characteristics such as humor may come easy to me, but not to others. Through another smaller topic, the GRIT scale, I learned how much grit I had, which made me feel so good about myself because I often focus on the bad things, I’ve been through but not the fact that I made it through those problems. These exercises made me feel strong about myself, then as a result I was happier. The most important topic to me was the lesson on how damaging social media can be to the self-concept. I believe it was week 10 when we discussed the negative effects social media has on your mental health. Through that lesson I realized most of my unhappiness with myself came from the comparisons I made to people I saw on social media. After that lecture I deleted social media off my phone for a while and I quickly saw I difference in how I felt about myself. By dleting the apps on my phone, I couldn’t see the posts that made me feel like I was behind in life. Although I did get some apps on my phone, for the sake of my friends who were bugging me to add it back, I rarely go on to besides for the social media posts we have for this class.

In the immediate future I plan on applying the strengths survey to my life more. I plan to use at least one of my top five strengths on a different person at least once a week. Beyond the immediate future, I want to use the bottom five of my strengths on new people at least three times a week. I want it to be more often than my top five strengths because I feel like it would be more of a challenge since I don’t use them as often. Some changes I’ve already made was stated earlier, I deleted all of my social media apps on my phone for about a week. I redownloaded them, but I use it a fraction of the amount of time I did before; I did this to lessen my comparisons to my peers. Some changes I still need to work on in my eating and sleeping habits. The eat, sleep, move exercise we did really showed me how poor my eating and sleeping habits are. They always worsen towards the end of the semester due to so many assignments being due. I plan on fixing that after I graduate in a few weeks; I need to make sure my final grades are decent before I change anything

Since I am not on social media as much anymore, to help my self-concept, I hadn’t thought of a way to share things through that platform. I do have some of the apps back on my phone, so  I might make it a goal that maybe once a week I tweet something positive. The lecture on positive psychology stressed the importance of giving a compliment so I may give one or two people a random compliment. I also studied different coping strategies for depression, so I could alternate between compliments and coping strategies.

I chose this picture because before this class I would look to people and situations to make me happy. I knew the saying that happiness was within you, but I never truly believed it. Once I started doing these exercises and seeing my natural talents and abilities, I realized that I could create my own happiness.

A Change of Heart <3

A Change of Heart <3

 

This class is one of the best classes I have taken in a while. The main reason why I took this class was to find alternative ways to deal with a stressful college lifestyle. I will say that this course for me was a life changer. There has been so much that I have learned, from mindful meditations all the way up to the main foundations of forgiveness. I am truly sad to see this class come to an end because it has taught me ways of maintaining a healthy lifestyle as well as relating to my colleagues on a level where I thought I would be singled out. This class has taught me to express myself and know that positive changes in your lifestyle only start with you.

One of the lessons that really changed my perspective was learning about forgiveness. This is one major challenge for me in my life that I am always trying to get a better understanding of. This lecture broadened my perspective of how forgiveness plays a huge role in communication skills. What captured my attention during this lecture, was the amount of serenity I felt from this speaker. To me, Ev Worthington filled the room with radiance, his blissful ambiance is a something that I strive for in my everyday life. Hearing his touching stories about his mother and brother really encouraged me to stay focused on the positive situations going on in my life. I felt that I was holding way too many grudges and there is way more things in life to dwell on than just the negative. Even though what he went through was extremely tough, he came out a warrior and passed down his knowledge to students that really needed it. This was meaningful to me because I know that I always have a hard time forgiving people and it affects my friendships as well as my mindset. I try to always keep in mind that there are people struggling worse than I am, so I need to find it in my heart to forgive with ease. I know that applying this mindset in my lifestyle is going to be a slow and gradual process. One thing that I want to start doing is, at least once a week write down everything that I am grateful for to remind myself on why I shouldn’t hold grudges. Sometimes I fail to realize how short life really is and spending majority of it upset is a waste of valuable time. There is a significant number of positive events in my life that I need to cherish more and stop thinking so much on the negative. But I always wonder, why is it so easy to think negative thoughts but not positive ones?

Some changes in my life that I have already made is maintaining more positive relationships. I’ve noticed that the more positive people that I have in my life, the more I see a purpose for it. I try not to be around individuals that are super judgmental, these are the type of people that always get under my skin. Positive relationships give positive outcomes. When I hang around people that care about my well being, my days seem so much brighter. It is so easy to feel alone when you surround yourself with pessimistic people. Trying to branch out of my comfort zone and talk to new people is increasing my social life and well as my confidence! What I still need to work on is gaining more of a healthy lifestyle, from healthy food all the way to a healthy mind, body and soul. I feel that when I am able to focus more on my health I will see a significant change in my moods. I am willing to dedicate a huge amount of time for myself to achieve my goal of constant bliss.

I am already doing a great job of sharing what I’ve learned in class to close family and friends. On my social media, I follow a lot of influential and mindful accounts in order to stay up to date. My family and I are constantly sending each other motivational blogs and posts to get us through the day. Taking this class made me want to become more engaged with mindfulness and positive affirmations that I know will help me in the long run and long term. This is a class that I will never forget because this is my foundation for a new start in life.  A positive, optimistic, fulfilling lifestyle and I cannot wait! ????

 

Picture from: https://www.mindful.org/a-simple-mindful-gratitude-exercise/

Edited by me

Noah Sharps SOH blog 3 Final Blog

Noah Sharps SOH blog 3 Final Blog

This final blog post will go over what I learned throughout this entire class.

  1. The major lessens I learned throughout the semester was that a lot goes into making yourself happy and it also takes time. You need to focus on staying committed to things and making yourself happier. There are many ways to help, like starting with a healthier diet, to staying off your phone, to also forgiving people and not holding grudges. Many things in life take time and commitment, and its important to not lose hope or give up. Some smaller topics that relate back to this are recovery, nutrition, and forgiveness. Recovery is a long road that lasts basically your entire lifetime. Nutrition is not something that you do for a week, it’s something you should focus on every single day in order to get the benefits. Lastly, forgiveness is not something to expect or feel like you have to do it instantly, but with time, forgiveness can make you feel better and feel like you have a weight off your chest.
  2.  I can commit to making these changes in my life by making sure I am not eating fast food every day, and including some veggies and fruits into my diet. I can also watch how much sugars i’m taking in everyday. I can also start to forgive people for things, and not be so stuck up on small things. That is only going to make me feel worse and forgiving people will make my life go a lot smoother. Overall, I will be more dedicated and committed to being healthier, freeing my mind off small things, and trying to just stay more relaxed.
  3. I plan on spreading this knowledge with people I have learned by taking a bystander approach and telling people about how things take time and it is important to not give up. It is very important to stay committed and know that things take time. If I hear a friend talking about how hard it is to eat healthy, I will tell them to take it slowly, and just start incorporating small things into their diets like fruits and veggies to make it easier. I also will know how to talk to someone if they come to me asking for help with recovery, I will know what to say and to not make them feel bad about it.
  4. I think this image best describes what I learned this semester    I think this picture best describes what I learned because doing small things such as telling a friend how much they mean to you, not only impacts you positively, but also impacts them positively. Showing the smallest acts of kindness can go a long way to making everyone feel better.
final blog post

final blog post

In this class I have learned a lot about happiness and what can lead to it and what can hinder it. A few of the most important take away lessons I learned have learned was the way you eat, move, and sleep affect your happiness levels as well as the impact of social media on your mood and the perception that you have of yourself. I also learned a lot about mindfulness!

Mindful eating was taught by Erin Thornton, the Registered Dietitian at VCU. She provided a lot of helpful information when it came to this topic. Mindful eating is eating with intention and attention. The goal of this is to base meals on physical cues such as hunger signals rather than emotional signals. She provided a few helpful tips when it comes to this such as turning off distractions (phones, TV’s, and laptops), eat slower and take time to savor and enjoy the food you are eating, and the ability to rate your hunger on a scale of one to ten. You can rate your hunger before you eat, during, and after. This helps control the amount of food you intake, which can really help when it comes to over eating. I began trying this scale technique and I have noticed a change in the amounts of food I eat in a day. I can include mindful eating in everyday life. I also plan to educate others through social media posts.

Another aspect of physical well-being is movement. Over the past couple of years, I have gone from sitting on the couch all day being lazy to becoming a very active individual. I am a runner and also train with weights. I have lost over 70 pounds and have realized how much better of a person I feel now compared to then. Physically and mentally this has made me a stronger individual. We were taught in class that getting up and becoming active doesn’t have to mean starting off in the gym 6 out of 7 days of the week doing intense exercises. This is actually the wrong way to do it, you want to start off little by little and build as you improve. You can start off by walking a little more each day or even take the stairs instead of the elevator if you are able. Physical exercise is also something I partake in almost every day of the week; I have also brought people along with me to attempt to get them moving as well. Generally, with this I will take a picture at the gym and post it on social media and also say something about my progress just to show people that it can be like this for them as well.

Sleeping is the last aspect of physical well-being and probably one of the most important. Sleep is important for everyday function. It is suggested that you get 8 hours of sleep per night. While this is not always possible due to various reasons, the closer you are to 8 hours the better. Also, ways to improve sleep include not being on your phone or watching shows before bedtime because this impacts your brain and almost reactivates it. I personally have made it a goal to stay off my phone for at least an hour before bed time. I have noticed a major change in my sleep patterns! I have suggested the same among social media platforms (the social media assignments) and just in conversations with friends/ family.

As for social media, we learned a lot about how this affects anxiety and depression rates and can also cause body image issues. My group project also surrounded this topic and we were to delete our social media along with our friend group for 5 days. I noticed a major change with my willingness to do things along with my mood levels. There was overall a noticeable change in these individuals moods as the experiment went on. We also learned that the social media platform, Instagram is one of the most negative platforms out there, this was somewhat shocking to me.

Mindfulness was probably my favorite topic of this whole semester. I have participated in a few “Mindfulness Monday” events hosted by The Well and was always in a much better mood, especially when they were able to be held outside. I also participated in their glitter jar making program and really enjoyed being able to take something home with me from it. These were all mindfulness activities that I benefitted from as an individual. I also brought a friend along with me and she gave me her feedback every time, saying that she really felt a sense of relief for something so simple. Ever since mindfulness was taught, I make it a point to somehow include it in day-to-day life, even if it is only for a minute.

 

 

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/92112754853454979/

 

 

Outcome

Outcome


One of the major lessons I have learned this semester is that happiness can be felt in many different ways and can last over a short or longer period, depending on how much it affects the person. Whether it is small things such as getting a satisfying cup of coffee, celebrating a friend’s birthday or graduating with a bachelor’s degree. I also learned that many researchers point out the “flow of happiness”, in which they say makes people very happy. More so, they recommend people to aim for the “flow” experience. As I have understood, the feeling of flow, is being completely present in the moment, not thinking about anything else than what you are doing here and now. You are feeling a bit extra creative in the moment as well, which amplifies the flow. A third lessons I learned is that everyone comes from different backgrounds and will therefore possibly have various onions on what makes them either happy or sad. Besides that, I have learned to understand and respect other people more and accept that a person can only control what they can control. As well as, a person cannot change another person. If the person changes, they changed because of themselves.


I think depression, anxiety, positive psychology, relationships, emotional resilience, as well as nutrition and wellbeing are topics, we have been lectured in through this semester that I have been able to connect to form a larger inside. Those are the topics, which have been most important to me in order to increase my happiness and wellbeing. This semester has been better, than the previous one. Last semester I was often dealing with anxious episodes, and positive psychology helped me through it. More so, we have learned through class that having close relationships are the number one factor for being happy, which I can indeed relate to. Furthermore, I think as we grow older, we may become more emotional resilience, because we learned from our past. At last, nutrition, exercise and sleep affect the body and mind, and I am more aware of being good to myself in that matter. Giving myself what my body needs. Whether it is a healthy meal, a 30 min run or a good night’s sleep. All those topics have enlightened me about our overall happiness and how I can feel more happy day in and day out.


I will try to apply my insights from the class to my personal and professional life. For example, I will try to be more grateful for what I have, instead of focusing on what I do not have. I will also incorporate a deep breathing session every day for no more than 5 minutes in order to practice being more relaxed and in peace with myself. Sometimes I journal about my day, which helps me to reflect on both bad and good moments, and that helps me to stay in a better mood through the day. I will try to do that more often in the future. I will also still focus on my academics, but give myself time to socialize, because it has been something I have neglected, and that lifestyle has come to nit me in the …! Meaning, Sometimes I feel like I have no one to go too, when I feel sad. Close relationships matter the most to me and that I will remember for the future. As for emotional resilience, I will work on not taking anything personally and not to make assumptions. These two agreements will give me more personal freedom ahead in both my personal and professional life. I like to be physical active and play fun games, so I might begin playing handball again when I return to Denmark this summer. I will probably continue playing tennis for a while. Otherwise, I will enjoy going for runs outside in the woods, it is very beautiful to be in nature, and it is also something that increases my happiness to a great degree. I will also try to commit to be a better cook, in order for me to be able to enjoy a good healthy meal myself, but most of all being able to cook for family and friends to share.


I have made changes to my sleep schedule. Last semester I struggled a lot with sleep. I would wake up several times at night and would have a hard time falling asleep again. I was going late to bed, around 1am and I would wake up 7am almost every day because I would have morning workout at 8am. 6 hours was not enough. I tried this semester to give myself at least 8 hours sleep every night, and it has helped my mood significantly. I feel I have more energized, and I deal easier with stress and anxiety. I have also made progress in less procrastination this semester. Last semester I had to drop two classes, because I was so behind. This semester I am avoiding too many distractions and I have a better serious self-talk with myself, not coming up with excuses, but creating motivating thoughts that makes me work towards my goals in school. I still need to work on my nutrition. I’d like to drop 25 pounds, which I have gained through the last year. I want to be able to make healthier choices even though I am under stress. I also want to focus on improving my flexibility. I have always been very stiff and inflexible, but I want to change that. My idea was to do about 15 min stretching every day. When I finish up this class, I am going to recommend my friends and acquaintances to take it. I will tell them about the class and what we have learned, and that I think no matter what major you have, this class is worth taking. As well as through Facebook I can tell my friends back home in Denmark about what I have learned from the class, and I will tell my parents and my brother about what insights I have gained from the class, when they come for graduation in May.


The image below summarizes the biggest take away in class for me; “the importance of close relationships”.  The image comes from a news article, talking about “one week without Facebook makes us happier”. I thought the article and this image contributed well to the class’ title “Science to Happiness”. One science is that taking a break from social media every now and then makes us happier. As for translating the speech bubbles, I will let that be up to you. I will give you one lead; the language is Danish.

Images is taken from Berlingske.dk


 

Getting Better From Here…

Getting Better From Here…

Overall, the topics covered in week 6-10 focused on the blanket topics of mindfulness and resilience. On a more specific level, these weeks focused on how we cope with the stressors in our lives, the role substances play in our daily lives, and how well we actually know ourselves in terms of cognitive biases. These topics are all enveloped under the blanket term of mindfulness and resilience because all of these factors are ways to measure your level of resilience and mindfulness. These topics build upon our previous topics like happiness and positive psychology by helping us find ways to further analyze our levels of happiness, anxiety and our risk for mental disorders like depression and bipolar disorder. Overall, I have gathered a very good understanding of how bad my depression and anxiety levels have truly gotten recently. I am so used to being the strong person in the equation when it comes to my friend groups so I never really deal with my own depression or anxiety, and since I have moved to a point in my life, and in all our lives, where we are just too busy to regularly see each other and spend as much time as we used to together, I haven’t needed to bury my own needs and I have become super aware of them, and worse, not great at controlling it as I used to. Since I have realized this I have tried to gather myself and practice some of the methods we speak about in class to try and bring my mental health back up, and even though it is gradually getting better, it is a work in progress.

With this new found knowledge about the stressors I deal with daily and my reaction to them, I have found that stress holds the heaviest effect on my sleeping ability and habits. Going forward, I plan to try and put myself on a strict sleep schedule to help promote better sleeping habits and prevent me from creating worse and worse habits as I move further into my adulthood. In addition, our final project focuses on mindfulness and resilience, and as I have been searching for content to add to our project I have found lots of methods that can work in addition to my schedule, to help me feel more calm and relaxed, and hopefully be a better me. The one I am most excited about is yoga. I have always loved yoga, and I really would like to devote some serious time to it and improve my flexibility and my overall awareness of my mental health. I used to be an avid dancer and since I stopped dancing, I have lost a lot of my flexibility and strength and I would really like to regain that to help my own personal self-image and self-esteem. Finally, I really want to spend some time focusing on rebuilding my level of resilience as I feel it has greatly decreased of late and needs some rebuilding, something yoga can help with as well.

 

The photo I chose relates to my journey to find peacefulness and mindfulness and, in my mind, reminds me that I can work through my issues and find peace. Represented by a peace sign in the photograph.

 

https://unsplash.com/photos/y0HerwKQLMk

 

Resilience

Resilience

 

As a Psychology major, I have learned plenty of influential factors that is beneficial to our daily lives whether it is learning how to coping with stress, depression, or anxiety. One factor that has really stuck with me during our class time was resilience. With the rise in anxiety and depression reaching an all-time high it is important to adjust and adhere to rapid changes in society. There are the typical standard stressors (academics, sleep, finances, relationships) and the digital age stressors (image management, social comparison, fear of missing out, constant connection). The combination of these stressors are contributing to the distress we are then faced with. By avoiding the unnecessary digital age stressors, all the focus and energy can be put towards managing standard stressors. By decreasing our use of social media can decrease of social isolation while increasing our quality relationships. By spending less time on our screens can allow room for drastic improvements in procrastination, depression, and anxiety.

blog post #3

blog post #3

Throughout the semester I have learned how happiness is a feeling and just because we are not always happy does not mean we can not do things to help us feel the emotion of happiness. I also learned about my strengths and the things that I need to work on to help me become more happy. For example, I have not shown as much gratitude as I should and since taking this class I have been trying to show how thankful I am for even the little things. I think I still need to work on being resilent because I am hard on myself sometimes when I do not become as successful. I think I will still post quotes and videos on social media about  how to learn how to increase self worth. I think the image chooses demonstrate the class because It shows how many things affect being happy especially about being optimistic about things.

Noah Sharps SOH blog post 2

Noah Sharps SOH blog post 2

There are many similarities in the topics we learned about in these weeks. They are all beneficial to us in ways to make us happier and how to help manage stress better. There were some topics that differed, like the recovery topic we had, which may not pertain to you in general, but could play a role in someone you know. You can always reach out to them and help them if they need. The topics that stood out to me were the recovery, and the ones about the well and what it offers. I haven’t been to the well, or really knew what it was about until this semester, and I wish I had known about it earlier so I could have used it more. I have learned a lot from these weeks on how to better manage my stress and how to react in situations, like how to talk to a person who may need help and need to go to recovery. You need to talk to them a certain way for them to open up and talk to you, you can’t make them feel bad for anything because then they will just get worse. There are some changes I plan to make, like to get off my phone more, and start focusing on real life time. The assignment we did where we got off our phones for the whole class really made me feel more involved. The image I chose relates to my post because it talks about the mindset you need when going through recovery. You have to become a different person almost, and clear your head and really believe in yourself in order to get through recovery. Its a very long road but it is possible and you will feel so much better about yourself afterwards.

Blog post #1

Blog post #1

Mental health has been defined as the absence of mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety. Depressive disorder, frequently referred to simply as depression, is more than just feeling sad or going through a rough patch. It’s a serious mental health condition that requires understanding and medical care. Left untreated, depression can be devastating for those who have it and their families.  I personally think that there are ways you can cope with depression. Positive psychology can be a big factor

Positive psychology is the scientific study of happiness. This is a fresh approach to depression treatment. Positive psychology’s evidence-based techniques can help you overcome depression and build your well-being. This theory is based on the belief that happiness is derived from both emotional and mental factors. Positive psychology aims to help people identify happiness from moment to moment. With that being said that gives you time to focus on your strengths and not your weakness.

Getting to know yourself better is a great start. Insecurity is an inner-strength killer. Your personality is the foundation of power. Get to know it well. Also there’s nothing wrong with being alone. The world is a noisy place. Distractions and disruptions can chip away at your core, leaving you frazzled and beat up. Take time to rejuvenate. Lastly, set a routine. Separate your daily tasks into repetitive tasks and thinking tasks. Then create processes and routines for the repetitive tasks. You’ll be thrilled with the time and brain space you just found.

SOH Blog Post #2

SOH Blog Post #2

In weeks 6 through 10 we discussed cognitive bias, resiliency, and other mental wellness skills that help us control, organize, and be aware of our thoughts. These are all key things that contribute to managing and decreasing stress and in turn increasing increasing positivity. These skills are enhanced with what we learned in weeks 1 though 5 that taught us more about ourselves focusing on our strengths and weaknesses. While weeks 6 through 10 taught us how to apply what we know about ourselves in order to improve our mental well being. For the larger picture I believe this class has helped me to stay more positive and manage stress in a better way. Being so close to graduation I have experienced many hardships and obstacles both large and small, and sometimes felt like giving up. However, if I had learned some of these techniques before, I could have been much better off. My lows would not have seemed quite as deep and I could see past the short term and focus on the more positive sides of things. The image I envision for this is abstract art. Art is in the eyes of the beholder, this painting could be seen as chaotic and stressful or beautiful with the colors all working in harmony. It is up to the viewer to decide whether he/she sees the painting depicting a negative or positive message much like the way we have control over our thoughts and feelings in any given situation.

Saatchi Art by Igor Bajenov via Google Images
Blog Post 2

Blog Post 2

During weeks 6-10 we have talked and learned greatly about what resiliency is and how social media impacts our lives along with other concept containing mindfulness. A lot of the topics that we talked about connect together through reactions and knowledge building off each other to understand what certain things mean. Throughout the entire course we have learned about mindfulness, positive psychology, and we transitioned into aspects that can enforce those things such as resiliency.  These concepts taught me that I have failed and failed so many times in my life and each time I got back up and kept trying, that is what being resilient is and I became mindful of that face and felt empowered as an individual. I have learned and used that in my everyday life to keep myself motivated and brave to take on any task and stand back up after being knocked down.

BLOG POST 2 MCNELIS

BLOG POST 2 MCNELIS

Recently we’ve explored resiliency and the harmful effects of social media use.  Personally, I really needed these lessons in my life right now.  When it comes to resiliency, I’ve been struggling lately.  As a senior, I’ve been frantically applying to as many jobs as I can which means interview after interview.  After a few failed interviews, I struggled with finding a way to cope and move on.  Instead, I turned to drinking and partying as a coping mechanism.  However, after learning about the importance of resiliency, I now know the necessary tools that I can use when dealing with failure and pushing forward.

The social media lectures really surprised and shocked me.  I remember the lecturer showed us that overusing social media can have the exact same effects as drugs.  After learning this, I decided to experiment myself and delete my favorite social media platform, Instagram.  I’d be lying if I said it isn’t hard.  However, I’ve found that I am so much less distracted by my phone and have much less of an urge to pick it up and scroll for hours.  I would recommend taking a break from social media to anyone.

image : https://npnews24.com/2018/08/02/now-monitor-tool-tab-social-media-addiction/

 

SOH Blog #2

SOH Blog #2

During weeks 6- 10 we discussed Resiliency, cognitive bias, and other mental wellness skills that are helping not only learn who we really are but help us cope and respond positively to negative stimuli and stress. The content that we are going over now is helping us perceive outside source of stress like events or relationships better. The content from weels 1-5 was a more inward-looking and focus specifically on the things and skills that you as a person have going on internally and how genetics can even affect things. The biggest thing that we’ve learned about recently is resiliency and how it affects me as an athlete and a student. I’ve noticed that I am seeing the brighter side of things because I know whatever is stressing me out is temporary so my perception about stressors has changed. The picture I chose exemplifies resiliency. No matter what is happening around you, you should fight through it and shine anyway. Grow through the obstacles.

 

 

Picture:

http://gonzagascblog.blogspot.com/2015/05/promoting-resiliency-in-elementary.html

Blog Post 2

Blog Post 2

During weeks 6-10 I have gained so much well needed information containing mindfulness, Depression ,social media, how important meditation is, Cognitive biases, and this list goes on. Being in this class has not only helped me mentally but also has effected the people around me. One lecture that really stuck with me was the most recent one which was about the effect of social media today.  It helped me tackle and understand that most of the things I go through in this generation and even just in general stem from. I knew how much of an effect social media was in general over our generation to day but to actually see the effects and the logistics of it was quite sickening in my opinion. I have also developed a different type of peace since I was encouraged to meditate more and actually give myself time out of the day to just breathe. I believe it was week 7 where we were told to meditate for our weekly assignment, the results Iv’e seen in my life just from that alone has been tremendous. Ive become more patient and understanding, I think before I act and I wasn’t doing that very often. It definitely gave me a piece of mind in the midst of this crazy semester. Just being able to disconnect from life for a moment is very much needed. Before this class I wasn’t much of a reader but being involved with the weekly readings changed my mind quite a bit. For example, one weekly reading that I thoroughly enjoyed was an article called Silver lining for patients with depression. The article grasped my attention because I recently just went through a phase of depression and just to find out and compare based on the reading was very informative. In conclusion, being in this class from weeks 6-10 has changed my whole mindset towards mental health and awareness. I believe that classes like these help and contribute towards changing the world little by little. Just understanding the importance of mental health is of great importance especially today.

Blog post 2

Blog post 2

I have learned a lot of insightful things in these past chapters that I can apply to my own life and that I can use as guidance when navigating through relationships and helping other people. A common theme that I have noticed throughout the semester is practicing mindfulness and how this tactic can be applied to help us get through several obstacles such as depression or substance abuse. I have been able to connect dots and see the bigger picture of mental health issues and be able to understand why people do the things that they do.

The two biggest things that have stuck with me this semester are practicing and recognizing resiliency and the impact that technology and social media can have on our lives. Week 10 really opened my eyes to how in the past, I have not been “present” in what was going on around me. We talked about multitasking and how in this day and age it is commonplace to think that is what we should be doing to achieve everything that needs to be done in this fast-paced environment. This lesson has helped me realize how detrimental this can be to our attention spans and in turn, negatively impact the quality of our work. Disconnecting for just a short 50 minutes every day in class opened my eyes to how little I was able to focus on other things with my phone in my hand, and how that act is really just a subconscious compulsion–there’s nothing I need to be doing on my phone most of the time. I am already starting to become more aware of the time I spend on my phone and how a lot of that feeds into negative thoughts. Comparing myself to other people on instagram, wasting time on things that don’t matter, looking at things I wish I could afford and can’t, etc.–none of those things are benefitting me in any way. In fact they are harming me a great deal. This class has made me want to implement change for the better, so I have begun by setting a time limit on my phone for social media so that I am notified when I have gone over the excess limit. This alone makes me much more conscious of how much time I am spending on there.

I would say the biggest lesson I have learned from this unit that ties in with everything in the class we have learned so far is the practice of resiliency. Resiliency is all about bouncing back from things and I think being aware of this act can give us a lot of perspective to get through the next hurdle. This class has made me aware of the times that I have been resilient and it gives me courage to keep pushing through. It helps me realize that I have faced all sorts of challenges–whether it be with depression or anxiety or something else–and how I used forms of resiliency in all of these cases to combat what I was dealing with. It is a great weapon to acknowledge how far you have come and what you are capable of overcoming. With this teaching of resilience, I have learned to practice hope.

I chose this image because it shows a plant flourishing and growing in the cracks despite not having hospitable conditions. It encapsulates the idea that you are capable of pushing through the bad and dark times if you practice resilience and keep going.

 

https://medium.com/leadership-motivation-and-impact/how-to-be-more-resilient-bebc7f68b038

Blog 2

Some of the things we learned in this chapter was very interesting to me and I actually learned a lot about myself and have changed my ways in class. I always thought that not having my phone would make class feel much longer and that I’d miss important information from either a text or phone call. This last week I put my phone away for all of class and it helped me relax and really focus more. It also felt as if a burden had been lifted off my shoulders. I felt immediately more relaxed and time seemed to fly by it’s something I will probably do for now on in all of my classes.

 

Relaxing has become more and more important to me over the last couple weeks. For me I’m a college baseball player. It’s extremely stressful, we play five games a week so we’re never at school and it’s a big deal to win so playing well and winning is also very stressful. I needed to learn little things that would make me less stressed. To figure out what you need to do to get less stressed you first have to figure out what things make you stressed. One thing that we use all the time that can lead to stress and anxiety so easily is your phone and how easily we can access the internet. High screen use can cause Anxiety, Depression, Low self Support, bad sleep, and low physical activity. Little things that people post online could flip the switch for an athlete then they can’t help but to continue to look at it. It’s all because so many people today are so worried about what other people think. People who have a good support system are usually able to get through things much easier. I know with my parents and family they help me a lot when I’m feeling down and a little sad. My Mom can just tell by the way I look when I’m sad or mad and they’ve always been a great support. There has been an increase of 50% increase in the teen suicide rate from 2007-2015. Also and increase of 35 percent more college students from 2011-2017 have considered suicide. This numbers are alarmingly high and we there has to be reasons why it’s happening. Many say it could be do too social media and excessive screen time.

 

Substance abuse is always a way for people to try and get rid of their problems. It’s never the right way to do it because you only get worse and worse. It’s a coping method a it hides the pain you are feeling at the moment and helps you forget whatever you’ve endured.  Nothing will get better for you things will only get worse in fact. I’m all for having a drink a time are two to knock of the edge but you have to know your limits and recognize how dangerous too much could be. You have to know the line and know never to cross it. That’s just a very slippery slope it may seem nice at first cuz it takes you way almost like out of reality but the more you do it the more you will begin to crumble.

 

I commented on phamfever science of happiness blog 2

 

I commented on samracine blog post 2

 

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

These past four weeks or so in class have been really insightful to me for recognizing how complex each individual’s personality is and how that plays into the other parts that we’ve covered in class like resiliency. We have been talking about mindfulness for most of the semester and these past few weeks of class have really helped me make the connection between being more mindful to improve my resiliency in certain situations where I would have been quick to react negatively, sabotaging any positive outcome that I could make from the situation. Different types of addiction have been a major topic in class also, with a special focus on social media the past couple of weeks.

Week 10 of class really opened my eyes to how attached to smart phones and social media that today’s society, myself included, is. The impact of fully disconnecting for just 50 minutes while I paid attention and listened to the statistics on the effects of social media and screen usage on one’s mental health really hit home to me. When I think back on times where I had been unproductive while studying or doing an assignment, I can always remember that I had my phone right next to me with my apple watch turned on to buzz my wrist for every notification imaginable.

The biggest insight that I have received from not just these past four weeks of class but the whole semester is that resiliency is a combination of every tactic that we’ve studied to increase or maintain levels of happiness. Resiliency is different for every person because every person is experiencing different things in their own way. The weekly exercise for exploring previous resiliency helped me understand how I had dealt with adversity in the past and gave me an outline for dealing with it in the future. For every task I always have a goal in mind like I believe that almost everyone does, but the end result typically does not play out like you plan when setting your original goal. Thinking back on the outcomes of previous resiliency through the exercise and many times after completing the exercise, I can see that through dealing with resiliency, I have become more accustomed to being uncomfortable in situations where things are not planning out the same way that I saw them in my head, meaning I am becoming more resilient.

The biggest thing that I have taken away from our recent lectures in class is that resiliency is one of the biggest keys to happiness but is always a work in progress. We had a class discussion on how to stay resilient and positive in a world/society that seems so negative and talking with my classmates made me feel better because it seems like resiliency is a work in progress with everyone. Whether it’s something like dealing with not getting as many likes as you had hoped on a picture you posted to Instagram or studying hard for a test and not receiving the grade you expected, you always have to find a way to move on, keep working to get better, and continue to give your best effort despite negative outcomes. Just because you were resilient in a tough situation in the past doesn’t mean that you’re going to have the same reaction to something that happens down the road. Times where you’re struggling and feeling overwhelmed are times when mindfulness can really help so that you eliminate anxious thoughts and stressors so that you can focus on the task at hand and be as resilient as possible.

The image of this tree growing awkwardly in the desert shows an example of resiliency in nature because the tree had to adapt and find a way to live in a harsh, unforgiving environment. The resiliency of the tree living in an unfit environment has helped this organism grow and it has to be resilient to its living conditions every day to survive. Resiliency in our human lives isn’t so black and white to where if you aren’t resilient you die, but I feel that this is a good example to think about.

Tree in desert, Moab, Utah, United States Royalty-free stock photoImage retrieved from: https://dissolve.com/stock-photo/Tree-desert-Moab-Utah-United-royalty-free-image/101-D145-292-643  by Blend Images.

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

At first glance mindfulness and personality traits don’t seem to have much in common but I picked up on some links between them in class. Practicing mindfulness helps people stare aware of their emotional state and allows you to be more at peace with your thoughts and interactions. If someone is higher in impulsivity or sensation seeking (externalizing traits) mindfulness may help them understand motivations for doing something or repercussions for doing it. If someone is higher in hopelessness or anxiety sensitivity (internalizing traits) mindfulness can help someone let go of negative or intrusive thoughts and be more content with the situation and practicing mindfulness can also make it easier to regain control of thoughts during an anxiety attack. Resilience is also related to personality. Achieving or maintaining resiliency may be difficult for certain people due to their personality traits or they may not understand why they are struggling to keep up compared to everyone else. People cope with the world and circumstances in different ways and it’s important to be aware of what works best for you and that it may be different than the way other people cope. Resilience is commonly tied to positive psychology because they both emphasize strengths and adapting to circumstances rather than deficits. The strengths survey we did in the second week helped me think of new ways I could try to keep up with life that incorporated my strengths.

I have thought a lot about the way I use my strengths in my life. My number one strength is creativity. I have always valued creativity and I like to create things whenever I’m feeling stressed and also to relax. Instead of getting lost in my work, creating something helps me visualize and work through whatever is on my mind. I like to practice mindfulness and pay attention to my thoughts, the sensation of brushes on my face, and colors I’m using when I put on makeup. Kindness and humor were also in my top five strengths. I am definitely an extrovert around my friends and I love nothing more than making them smile or laugh. This class has helped me realize I do have support and the ability to keep going should I choose to do it. I’ve realized that I’m easily flustered and beat myself down rather than build myself up when I reach an obstacle. I’m learning to have more faith and compassion for myself. I’m accepting that I may not be on the path I thought I would but it’s just as wonderful and my own. The picture I chose is reflective of this line of thinking.

Image result for self love

Blog post #2

Blog post #2

In the first part of this class we learned about a variety of different topics about mental health, SUD, and stress. In the second part of the lecture series we learned about how you can improve protective factors in your life. We learned about mindfulness and ways that we can improve our emotional resilience skills. Larger lessons that we have learned about include that we can improve our health in a variety of way. I have not made any changes in my life based on the class content. I do like attending all of the lectures and learning about myself. The picture represents being mindful and aware in my day to day life.

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

From week 6 to week 10 I have learned a lot about how social media and how it plays a part in our everyday life.  How mindfulness practices can really help you stay calm and relaxed throughout the day. I learned that your phone can distract you from a lot of important moments and time that you can spend with people. People can get too caught up on checking the score of the latest game, or making sure that they snapchat their friend back, or checking Instagram or twitter to find the next coolest meme. I know we all are guilty of being on our phones too much, but we don’t always have to have our phone right next to us at all times. It can be good for us to “Disconnect” from our phones every once in a while. Now I’m not saying you need to throw your phone away, I’m just trying to get a point across that we should spend more time face to face talking with someone instead of being glued to our phone screen all the time. I really do feel like disconnecting from our phones can benefit in almost everything that we do whether it is school work, our physical abilities, and even sleep can be affected by our phones.

I enjoy doing the mindfulness practices in class because they help me calm myself down after my first class of the day. By doing these exercises you can often catch yourself being in a bad mood or a happy mood. If you are in a bad mood you want to fix it somehow, but if you are in a good mood you want to keep it. I really do feel like writing this blog post made me understand how mindfulness practices aren’t a waste of time and they can help you be in a better mood.

 

This picture below describes how people can be trapped and can’t get away from their phone.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwi8novEgZzhAhWvSt8KHc1TDAMQjhx6BAgBEAM&url=http%3A%2F%2Fgodwineagles.org%2Fblog%2F2017%2F06%2F02%2Fcellphone-addiction-a-generation-of-tech-aholics-by-j-1-correspondent-isaac-hull%2F&psig=AOvVaw0snpSs00jyakHgOj1tuADc&ust=1553559286266017

Science of Happiness Blog Post 2

During weeks 6-10, the topics covered in class include the use of substance abuse and how it affects the psychological development of the brain, mindfulness, resilience, and the effects of mobile phone usage on mental development. One point of discussion that was made in class that was interesting to me was how social media and drugs almost stimulate the same “high” one could get by using them. While they do not necessarily correlate in the physical effects, they both trigger the same chemicals in the brain as some people may use drugs to enhance how they feel and increase the dopamine level in their brains while some social media users become addicted to the number of likes and connections they make with their online audience.
Mindfulness and resilience can be two topics that can also go hand in hand. Both of them can be beneficial mental practices. Mindfulness is the practice of being in the moment with yourself and what is in front of you. Mindfulness is a useful tool to those who may be overwhelmed with stress within their lives. One can utilize it to take some time off during the day to relieve their stress and anxiety or practice the discipline of mindfulness in order to prioritize the things in life that are important to them. Resilience is another way to positively handle the stress that comes in our lives. Though it is more about reflecting on the hardships that one has been through and growing better from those experiences.
Though mindfulness does not directly relate to the use of substance, one could use mindfulness to stay away from their mobile phone. Disconnecting from social media is a good mindfulness practice in order to be in the moment with what is around you. On the other hand, resilience can be a helpful discussion to have with those dealing with substance abuse. People who decide to go clean and stay sober should be proud of themselves and all the hardship they have overcome. To recognize the resilience in those who are going through that healing process or are trying to start is a huge stepping stone to help them realize their worth.
The topics discussed in weeks 6-10 relate to the previous topics in many different ways. First, they are all mental health discussions or ways to deal with mental stresses. They relate to the topic of depression and anxiety as shown in the fact that the invention of the smart phone significantly increased the number of adolescence suffering from mental health disorders. Resilience relate to the topic of positive relationships because, often,  people who recover from trauma have the help of those around them who care about their well-being.

I learned on how to deal with stress and anxiety a lot in the past 10 weeks. I can see why my generation face a lot of struggles when it comes to dealing with our mental health. One of the biggest reason is because it is not a topic often covered in class or widely discussed in society. Even though the platform to speak out for those with mental health is growing, there are still a lot of stigmas and assumptions made to those facing mental health problems and disorders. People can be ignorant and misinformation spreads really quickly throughout social media. On the topic of social media, it has completely taken over everyone’s lives (myself included). We see social media as a way to connect to new information and people around us, yet, we use it as a distraction from living our own lives. It’s crazy to feel like what I’m doing is okay, until I actually sit down and think about how much time I waste being on my phone and not getting things done.

Ever since our mindfulness lesson and talking about the usage of our mobile phone, I’ve been trying to adjust my life schedule and habits in order to be more productive. I try to be mindful of the current goals and tasks I need to get done for the day and stick to them. I try to limit my time on social media sites by setting a time limit on them (for example setting a time limit on Instagram to alert me that I’ve been on it for 30 minutes/a day). When I’m at work, I try to stay off my phone until I get a certain assignment done, then I can rest and check my messages. When I feel the need to reach for my phone when I’m bored, I try to shift my goal to try and see if I could be doing something else productive instead (like read a book, work on my sketchbook, scrapbook, journal etc.). I try to be mindful of those changes and I notice that when I stick to them, I become really productive and get so many chores and tasks done in one go.

The image below relates to the topic of social media usage I wrote about today. I always try to excuse me being on the phone as me “multi-tasking” but I often get very little work done. I find that not only does being on my phone hurts my productivity, it also negatively affects my self-esteem as I tend to compare myself and my life to what I see on social media. When I disconnect and re-evaluate my choices and the things and people around my life, I find that I’m a lot happier and confident of myself as I have more time to focus on what I truly want to do and need to get done.

Image result for being productive
Image Source: https://medium.com/skills-of-the-future/being-productive-in-a-culture-of-interruptions-f6b3339437b3

 

Blog post 2

Blog post 2

Weeks 6-10 covered interesting topics that included the recovery process, resiliency, and screen time. I found these interesting as they not only connect to each other but also to past discussions on mindfulness. The recovery process was something that related to me because of friends and family that have had a history with this. I realized that it takes a large quality of resiliency that differs from person to person depending on background and also genetics to make it through, it is not an easy process and takes a strong will. After seeing the stats on how it effects your brain and the way it effects your state of mind for YEARS after it was a complete different perspective. While I knew it wasn’t easy, I didn’t have as well of a grasp as I thought on how the stages of mind set fluctuated over a 10 year process. I connected this with screen time because after being familiar with the recovery process I know that everyone has their own triggers, some more easily pulled than others. The internet and social media exposes you to soo much that it makes it that much easier to be exposed to that one thing that can trigger you. In the first few weeks there was more of a focus on the topic of mindfulness that I found ties deeply with the recovery process, just staying conscious of the steps you are taking to make it through is something that seems quite necessary to keep from relapsing. There are some definite changes I have started making more of a habit of making including the daily mindfulness exercises, growing up with quite severe anger issues I have learned to manage it quite well but now and then will get triggered. Recently I have had some problems that have really tested my resiliency and the mindfulness practices have done wonders in getting me through this process while quitting smoking at the same time. It is still not easy and still find myself struggling from time to time but I am still here doing what I need to do and once the wave has passed I find myself happy where I am and ready to continue bettering myself.

While I am not religious I still find this image relatable seeing as it is a variation of what I tell myself when I am on the verge of losing it. I put the image twice because I usually have to say it to myself multiple times.

Blog post #2

Blog post #2

Week 6-10 were about positive relationships, self-knowledge, mindfulness, resilience and emotional resilience in the digital age. A common tie is that they all have to do with the strength and ability of someone’s mental health. To maintain a positive relationship it is most important to know yourself and know when it is getting out of the hand. When it gets to a point where a relationship is not healthy anymore you got to be strong enough to end this relationship and deal with this. I think that all these topics help each other to accomplish good mental health. I feel like week 1-5 was a little more informative and more about mental illnesses and depressions and week 6-10 taught us more how to deal with any setbacks and get more aware of these.

A class that made a huge impact on me was the class about emotional resilience in the digital age. I realized how big of an influence social media actually has on our daily life and became more aware of all the extra tasks we have to do. I started noticing the extra task I do and I am trying to keep my screen time down. When we were not allowed to use our phone during class it really helped me to concentrate on the present and what was happening in class. I also noticed that I did not miss anything important in those 50 minutes when I looked at my phone after.

The picture basically shows the world we live in nowadays. Everything is controlled by technology (see the cameras) and everybody is looking at their phones and are not enjoying the present time to their fullest. Some people are with friends and still feel the need to go on their phone and get distracted by that instead of socializing. In class, we learned that socializing makes us happier which is not what happens when we are on our phones. We also saw that there was a correlation between the time when the iPhone came out and people their mental health.

Image result for society and digital age

 

(August 2014). APC and Hivos. https://www.apc.org/en/pubs/global-information-society-watch-2014-communicatio

Blog Post 2

Blog Post 2

During these past few weeks I have learned a lot about myself as well how the mind works. One week, we learned about our Personality Traits and how we ranked on them through our weekly exercise of the SURPS profile. We learned about how one of the traits is openness to experience. This personality trait may relate to what we learned in the lecture about cognitive biases and the term introduced, delayed discounting. I think that these two can relate because if you are open to new experiences you may choose to participate in delayed discounting such as spending money to do an activity that you are interested in, rather than saving it for something else important. I think that delayed discounting can also relate to what we learned about the digital age and building resilience and the effects of picking up your digital device can be. With delayed discounting we are inclined to pick up our phone and look at it and our social media first, before doing homework; however, we should instead aim for better concentration and put our phones away while studying in order to refrain from this form of delayed discounting. In our discussion about building resilience, it can relate to our discussion about addiction and how to talk to our friends who are experiencing substance use issues. We as friends can help our fellow friends who are struggling with substances to get help and go through recovery. If a friend or someone we know was struggling with substances and decides to go through recovery then they would be participating in their own form of building their resilience. During these weeks we also talked about mindfulness. I feel like you can relate mindfulness to what we did for our weekly exercise for Week 10 where we put our phones away for the 50-minute class period. I think these two can relate because by putting our phones away we were able to be in the present moment, fully reflecting on what was going on in the class and being in the present moment is a quality found in mindfulness.

The information that we learned in the first few weeks relates to the current material based on the fact that smart phone usage leads to higher levels of depression and anxiety levels. In the first few weeks we learned about aspects that contribute to depression and anxiety such as genes and in these recent weeks we have also learned the role of the digital age on depression and anxiety. The article and reading from week 10 discusses how smartphones may be associated with depression and anxiety. This was interesting for me to read because it made me aware of my personal feelings of feeling down when I look at my smartphone and how my smart phone can affect my mental wellbeing.

Then, the larger aspects that I have gained from class throughout the first 10 weeks is just how important that it is to take care of your mental health and wellbeing and be actively involved in self-care. Some self-care things that I have been working on is exercise which is also something that the podcast about Mental Health and Wellbeing, from What the Well talks about. One of the students mentions how her sports teams help her with dealing with stress and I have come to find that like her and her sports, exercise helps me with stress too. I have also learned about the benefits and gained knowledge of just how much of an impact social media plays a role in my life and mental health as well.

Next, I have not made any changes yet to habits, but I plan to make a habit soon of not using my phone or actually putting it in a separate area when I try to do homework so that I do not get distracted from it or turn to it when I am stressed from the workload. I was inspired to make this change after our lectures on the digital age and how we use our smartphones and how that relates to our wellbeing.

Lastly, the image I chose relates to my content in this post because in this post I discussed how smartphones and the digital age play a role in mental wellbeing.

https://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nzherald.co.nz%2Fresizer%2FcoF40PqmF7Ad7vmmUFUoeW2_FAw%3D%2F360x384%2Ffilters%3Aquality(70)%2Farc-anglerfish-syd-prod-nzme.s3.amazonaws.com%2Fpublic%2F674RHBUONRE4PCEDL7CGRSH2WI.jpg&imgrefurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nzherald.co.nz%2Fnz%2Fnews%2Farticle.cfm%3Fc_id%3D1%26objectid%3D12111047&docid=TRhdBK77vsABJM&tbnid=u9T1hWkdG5090M%3A&vet=10ahUKEwjR0-Sz_5vhAhVjdt8KHXUVB3kQMwgsKAQwBA..i&w=360&h=384&bih=561&biw=1280&q=bullying%20with%20smartphones&ved=0ahUKEwjR0-Sz_5vhAhVjdt8KHXUVB3kQMwgsKAQwBA&iact=mrc&uact=8

Blog Post #2

During weeks six through ten, we learned about many different things. Positive psychology being one. Positive Psychology is the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive. The first thing I noticed from this discussion was the slide that stated: “Self Care.” This is a very important factor. Not only for positive psychology but for everything we discuss. When you have self-care you perceive an increase in positive experiences. That reminds me of what we discussed in class about getting to know yourself. I love how in this class you can really relate to topics. With this topic, we talked about personality traits. Personality traits reflect people’s characteristic patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. This system includes five broad traits that can be remembered with the acronym OCEAN: Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism.       

We also learned that some personality traits can lead to some negative things. Speaking of negative things we also learned about substance use disorders. During this discussion, I learned quite a bit. The speaker from The Well seemed very caring and interested in our opinions. He was very thoughtful about his presentation. He wasn’t trying to talk negatively about the topic. He made me understand that people do substance not to enjoy it but to maybe run away from something. This reminds me of depression. Depression is real. I believe that depression has been on and continues to be on the rise. I believe the stressors of work and school greatly contribute to this trend, as many young students are forced to take several classes to get their education and also working at a job that they most likely don’t like creates even more stress.

This class so far has helped me open up more. I now have more friends and I’m very social. I was so to myself that I found myself pulling away from the world. It’s not good because I’m an athlete. Being that I’m an athlete people tend to talk to me more and I don’t like to talk. Thanks to this class and the content I’ve learned I’m getting better at opening up. Hopefully, I’m not the only one in this class that has overcome a very uncomfortable obstacle. The weekly exercises helped me out as well. The weekly exercises give me things to do that I’m not used to doing. My favorite one was from last week. I love being on my phone, of course not in class. It’s just like knowing that I can get on it at any time makes me complacent with pulling it out. Putting my phone up for fifty minutes wasn’t that bad at all. I actually paid better attention, which is good. Overall I’ve become a more social person, and I feel great about my decision. I’m around great people who support me for who I am, and I can’t be any happier. 

 

 

 

 

blog 2

Going from week 6 to week 10, things that correlate together is social media, mindfulness and  being happy.  The number one thing that helped me understand the most about happiness is the social media/ cell phone topic. Being away from your phone helps you understand and appreciate and flat out focus on things more knowing you don’t have to worry about checking it every so often and you can learn. I think spending time away from it can help you increase your awareness and happiness and release yourself from the things distracting you on your phone.

Mindfulness in this class has helped me as well. I think doing these activities making you realize what is going on, what is making you upset or stressed and thinking about them in a different way is a great technique to help relieve stress and make you feel better about what it is that is bothering you and can overall help you with happiness. Being happy I learned from these past weeks is based on and more so about your overall level of awareness about yourself and what makes you tick. Funneling what makes you  tick and help you work around it as well  as limiting yourself to things that you may spend t much time with and have better time management.

Image result for get away from social media

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blog #2

Going from week 6 to week 10, things that correlate together is social media, mindfulness and  being happy.  The number one thing that helped me understand the most about happiness is the social media/ cell phone topic. Being away from your phone helps you understand and appreciate and flat out focus on things more knowing you don’t have to worry about checking it every so often and you can learn. I think spending time away from it can help you increase your awareness and happiness and release yourself from the things distracting you on your phone.

Mindfulness in this class has helped me as well. I think doing these activities making you realize what is going on, what is making you upset or stressed and thinking about them in a different way is a great technique to help relieve stress and make you feel better about what it is that is bothering you and can overall help you with happiness. Being happy I learned from these past weeks is based on and more so about your overall level of awareness about yourself and what makes you tick. Funneling what makes you  tick and help you work around it as well  as limiting yourself to things that you may spend t much time with and have better time management.

Image result for get away from social media

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Science of Happiness Blog Post #2

Science of Happiness Blog Post #2

The science behind happiness is very intricate and requires an immense amount of effort to understand every little detail that’s included. Happiness is simply not based only on genetic influences, mental health flourishing, positive psychology and cultivating strengths, it’s much more than this which is why these topics from the first five weeks of class relate to topics from weeks 6-10. By this, I mean that happiness is complicated process but it relates to more than just one thing within our lives, every little detail contributes to something whether if its building resilience from anxious mood states, or exercising more often to cultivate our emotional strength, or even genetic influences on one’s personality, every detail within someone’s life contributes to the overall path of happiness.

Some of the topics we all discussed from week 6 – 10 include: emotional resilience, cognitive biases, personality traits, mindfulness in the workplace, substance use and the most interesting one of them all, social media use. I say social media use is the most interesting one of them all because it has literally built a senseless generation around us, and this generation has increased mental health problems like depression, anxiety, and other mood states and it is highly relevant to today’s society. Now all the topics from weeks 6 – 10 relate to each other in some sort of way, for example social media use has led to negative personality traits. To start, I relate mindfulness in the workplace to building emotional resilience because the workplace can be a very complex setting for someone and it can create a lot of stress depending on the workload. Throughout our reading for “Contemplating Mindfulness at Work: At Integrative Review,” we’ve learned that mindfulness in the workplace can increase our human functions because it allows us to adapt to stressors which is what a workplace is filled with. In the workplace, the employer searchers for employees who can adapt quickly to situations and handle whatever is thrown at them which kind of sounds like resilience in a way. We all are placed in work settings and adapt to what is around us, we must handle the stress that is floating around and push through, many people have difficulty with this which is why practicing mindfulness in the workplace isn’t such a bad idea. For example, if someone is facing a highly stressful task, they might just freeze in place and not be able to do it, but if that person were to complete a mindful activity to relieve the stress then they will learn how to handle the next stressful task. The mindful activity is the adaptation to what is being thrown at you, this adaptation to the stressor is what builds resilience within the workplace. This can also be affected by social media use, because from lectures and from the reading, we know that social media use can take one away from family time which decreases our overall well-being. This leads to problems in the workplace because a positive well-being leads to good workplace outcomes, so increased social media use can harm one’s work reputation and relationship with family.  Another set of topics from weeks 6 – 10 that relate to each other are social media use, personality traits, and cognitive biases. I find social media use very intricate because mass social media use only began around 2009 when Michael Jackson died, and it relates to other relevant topics in classes I have taken here at VCU. To start, in a sociology class I’ve taken here at VCU, I learned that politicians and capitalist firms use social media to get an edge of winning an election or selling a product to produce money, this is where fake news and informational failures comes from. Social media is filled with fake news and people promote it like its real but they have no idea that it’s false information, they do this because fake news draws emotion which is something that attacks all of us as humans. It can lead to personality traits where we cannot trust one another, introversion, and hopelessness because it is false information that we believe is real. The people that continue to promote fake news without knowledge that it is fake news can lead to addictive behaviors because of the constant social media use, we see this from our reading on the “Relationship of smartphone use severity in university students.”  Another example of this is that cigarette brands in the 50’s and 60’s promoted the use of their product through the media by saying it wouldn’t cause cancer when in fact they knew cigarettes were harmful/dangerous to the human body. This led to a numerous amount of cases around the U.S when people began to develop lung cancer through cigarette use, thus leading to the personality issues of mistrust. In short, cigarette companies promoted the use of their product, knowing it can cause harm to humans, but they did not care because people would buy it anyway which helped produce money, later people began to develop health problems which led to mistrusting the companies all together. Another way our topics from the last few weeks relate to each other is through substance use and recovery. The recovery with substance use builds emotional resilience because the person must learn to adapt to life without the use of the substance/drug. Recovery from substance use is tough and can take up to as long as five years to complete, but throughout this lengthy journey, it teaches one resilience through all the hardships. This is something we learned through a guest speaker in lecture, when he presented substance use recovery with opioids. Substance use can also lead to negative personality traits and cause one to be less pleasing to the people around them, it could literally change how people think of a person and whether they want to be friends with them or not. I find that some of the topics from weeks 1-5 can help relate to some of the last topics we have discussed in class because they all help explain each other in a way. For example, our personalities have some sort of genetic influences from our parents. Like if one of our parents have addiction problems, that can be passed onto us which leads us into having addiction problems, this is one way to explain how addiction begins in families and how genetics can play a role in personality traits. We can see this within our week six reading, because it basically talks about addiction and what can be defined as addiction. In this reading, it also mentions how adolescence are prone to mental health problems because they are still developing emotionally and cognitively, this can explain how social media use in adolescence has led to numerous amounts of health problems within our world today. Throughout all of our discussions of depression, anxiety, and other mood states, I can see how learning about these topics first help understand why social media use is so relevant to our society. First, we were presented with how severe and prevalent depression and anxiety is to our society, then we learn how social media use can lead to these types of mood behaviors. I find this highly relevant because social media use nowadays is increasing dramatically and many adolescents face these types of problems but continue to live with it which leads to poor personality traits/behavior, this isn’t really something everyone talks about but I feel like it should be publicized more because studies have shown that it leads to depression and anxiety problems. I also feel like understanding Keyes model of complete mental health flourishing was a good start into building the definition of resilience because mental health flourishing needs many adaptations to situations which builds resilience. For one to flourish in life, one must be willing to build resilience, both processes can take years to develop which is why I felt like it was good to understand flourishing before understanding resilience. Another topic that seemed to help understand a recent topic is positive psychology and its connection to human functioning, resilience, and personality. In our positive psychology lecture, we all learned what the three types of engagement were, behavioral, cognitive, and emotional. Understanding the difference between the three of these helped me understand how mindfulness in the workplace leads to increased human functioning with attention, cognition, and emotion, we see this throughout the week seven reading.

Based on what we have discussed in class so far as a whole, I’ve connected the science of happiness to more than just flourishing and genetic influences. It’s a continuum process where every detail of our lives has a role of building happiness. Maybe cultivating some of our strengths can help one realize what they need to do to be happy but for others, it’s much more than that, happiness requires you to focus on what you can do in the present. A lesson I have learned throughout these 10 weeks is that in order to be happy, I must be willing to be active and participate in the journey towards happiness, every single thing I do contributes to it in some sort of way, and the biggest lesson of them all is that I am in charge of what happens to myself, I make the calls which lead to what happens to me. I am in charge of this journey, not my friends, roommates, family, or professors, I am the person who will make myself happy through focusing on myself and loving myself before loving others. Some changes I have started to make within my life to better myself is discipline myself just like high school. For example, I would wake up around 5:30-6:00 A.M because I would want to get my work done before school even started but now that I am in college I am lazier about waking up early. Also, waking up this early made me realize that I cared more to get my high school work done, waking up at later times (which is what I do now) made me realize that I don’t have the drive to get work done compared to waking up earlier. Like I felt like I had more of a purpose to get my high school work done because I was awake with no distractions. Another daily habit I plan to change is to create a healthy eating schedule, I already cook a lot of food as it is but I could start to cook healthier because food plays a huge role in happiness.

I chose this image because it reflects on this journey we call life. Like I said in the blog post above, I am in charge of what happens to me next, no matter what I have to go through I will be the one who takes care of myself. This picture speaks to me because one can be experiencing the most stressful thoughts but in the end it creates this sort of art because we fight through it and we continue with life. I also find this picture to relate to resilience because it shows all the colorful ways we can adapt to the situations around us no matter how tough it is. Happiness is a rough journey but throughout all the other beautiful things there are in life, it can be achieved no matter what, we can hold our heads down but not for too long because in the end, life will continue to move on and we have to move with it.

https://spaece.tumblr.com/image/175709557736

 

Blog Post #2 – Mary C.

Blog Post #2 – Mary C.

I thought one of the most interesting lectures we had was about personality and the SURPs test. I liked doing the test because it was interactive and allowed me to put myself in a range of personalities and behaviors that I didn’t even realize I had and showed my risk for substance abuse. It gives me an opportunity to work on these behaviors and make changes for the better. I was surprised by how high my hopelessness/negative thinking score was. I had a 16 and 14 and up was considered high. I don’t always think of myself as a negative thinker. I try and stay positive but I do bottle up emotions which could be why my score was so high.

We also talked about emotional resilience in the last few weeks which I think is an important add on to personality. In the personality section we talked about addictive personalities and in the emotional resilience lecture we talked about addictions to screen use. It is interesting that you can see all 4 of the traits for addiction: Impulsivity, Sensation Seeking, Anxiety Sensitivity, and Hopelessness. Emotional resilience helps to protect us against stress, anxiety, depression, and addictions so it is important that we see the ties between personality and emotional resilience.

We can relate this back to previous lectures when we talked about depression and anxiety and how they effected our body. Now we know how depression and anxiety effects not only our bodies but also our personalities and mindset. We can apply the SURPs test to people with depression and anxiety to rate how likely they are to get into substances which could eventually lead to substance abuse.

I believe that through the last couple of lectures I have learned that I need to be more positive and work on mindfulness. The exercises in class have been helpful as has the mindful Monday’s at the Well. I want to learn to be less negative and not hold on to past events. The picture I chose shows that nothing is every hopeless. Sometimes you just have to try something new like facing a different direction. Hopelessness should not define our personality. Especially if it is something you can work on.

blog post #2

blog post #2

The biggest connection that I have made from week six through week ten is mindfulness, social media, and overall happiness. Mindfulness and happiness tend to correlate with each other because doing mindfulness exercises help relieve stress which in turn makes people happier.

I think that the anxiety lecture from the beginning of the semester can also relate to stress and the mindfulness factors. Mindfulness can help improve many things and anxiety is included in those things. I can personally speak from experience that my stress and anxiety had improved since I have started participating more in mindfulness activities.

Another factor that can relate to each other would be happiness and the use of social media. Social media is currently a big attraction in today’s society, and it is truly addicting. Many people in this generation depend on these platforms for validation and it shouldn’t be that way. It actually brings a lot of depression with it and younger children are really struggling with it. People, especially younger children shouldn’t depend on social media as much as they do, they should be more worried about being outside or whatever the case may be.

The biggest changes that I have made in the past few weeks would be limiting my social media use. I have a limit on my phone that will lock the apps after a certain amount of use, and I have noticed a huge change in my happiness and how much I am able to concentrate when it comes to school work. Another thing I have been working on is mindfulness. Every day I wake up and do a few minutes of mindfulness and have noticed a major change in my stress levels, as well as my mood. I tend to have a much better day when I start it off with mindfulness then when I don’t.

dailyillini.com/opinions/columns-opinions/2017/10/24/dont-depend-social-media-happiness/

 

 

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

The topics covered in Science of Happiness class, weeks 6-10, were Personality Traits & SURPS (Substance Use Risk Profile Scale), Cognitive Biases, Mindfulness, and Emotional Resilience. All these topics are similar in the way that they all affect the brain and physiological processes of the body. Impulsivity increases high-risk behaviors that can harm one’s body, addiction negatively impacts the brain and slows down physiological processes, mindfulness improves overall health and neural plasticity over time, and emotional resilience limits stress that can damage the body.

On the contrary, there are many differences among these topics. The personality traits and SURPS lecture by Dr. Vassileva was very informative and thorough. Dr. Vassileva discussed the “Big 5” personality traits (Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness to experience, Agreeableness, & Conscientiousness), externalizing and internalizing disorders, and SURPS measures (impulsivity, sensation seeking, anxiety sensitivity, & negative thinking). The cognitive biases lecture by Dr. Vassileva was thorough as well. She discussed impulse control, addiction as a developmental disorder, and impulsivity’s effect on addiction. The mindfulness lecture from presenters Reina and Warren-Brown was enlightening, and the calm app assignment was helpful. Learning about mindfulness allowed me to reflect how I can implement meditation into my daily life. The emotional resilience in the digital age lecture from Ms. Schroder had the most effect on me because I could relate to its message. Ms. Schroder discussed mental health trends in the 21st century, high screen use impact, high screen use risk factors, digital age stressors, emotional resilience, and strategies to boost emotional resilience/well-being. One thing I noticed throughout her PowerPoint presentation was her usage of research and citation of references. This increased her credibility because she presented valid information. In fact, her research resembled the study conducted in the reading, Relationship of smartphone use severity with sleep quality, depression, and anxiety in university students. In the article, Demirci et al. shed light on smartphone use and its negative effect on young adults; in the study, smartphone users had an increase in depression, anxiety, and daytime dysfunction scores. Ms. Schroder also passed out a worksheet and facilitated its completion. The main element of Ms. Schroder’s lecture that took me by surprise was having to disconnect from our phones and social media for 50 minutes during class. Later having to report on how we felt about our disconnection in the week 10 exercise. At first, I felt uneasy doing this because without my phone I feel lost. However as the week went on, I became more comfortable and realized that I want to take a hiatus from social media for a week.

The content of weeks one to five (depression, anxiety disorders, positive psychology, & relationships with substances) helped me understand what defines happiness. Addiction may improve happiness for a short time, but in the long run it will lead to negative emotions. Social media use may be a favorite pastime, but research shows that it has harmful effects. One theme that remains constant in this class is the diversity of individuals. Everyone has different personality traits, levels of emotional resilience, traumas, and coping strategies. But this class unites all of us to focus on the topic of the week at hand and share our own perspectives through class discussion.

As I mentioned earlier, I plan to take a hiatus from social media for a week. Starting this Monday, I will log out of my social media and focus more of my attention on those around me who are very important in my life. My goal is to stay off social media for a week, but if I can hold off more than a week, that will be even better. Ms. Schroder’s lecture inspired me to let go of digital stressors and value the people and activities that are most important to me. I believe that this disconnection from social media will help improve my mood and well-being.

On this past Wednesday, March 20th, I attended the Wellness Wednesday booth in the Commons. Wellness coordinator, Ms. Carrie Baines, discussed the different types of tea, benefits from drinking tea, and handed out tea packets. She also recommended a few green tea brands that I should try. From her presentation, I learned that tea has less caffeine than coffee and black tea of all teas contains the highest caffeine content. Black tea can reduce the risk of stroke and green tea can prevent clogged arteries and interfere with the growth of cancers. Adding various essential oils, such as peppermint and orange, have different benefits. Wellness Wednesday was very informative, and the teas were tasty.

I chose this image because it is necessary to take a few minutes out of the day and put the digital devices away. Focus on what brings you joy whether that is reading a novel, cooking, drawing, exercising, shopping, or going for a walk in nature. Often, we can become bound to our cell phones and instead of us controlling them, our phones control us. I suggest that we take back our control, silence our cell phones, and focus on all that life has to offer us.

Image Citation: https://www.flickr.com/photos/askpang/9414719921/in/photostream/

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

During these past 4 weeks of class I have learned a lot about maintaining happiness with my life. We talked about how resiliency is a combination of a lot of the topics we discuss in class and how they can maintain or increase levels of happiness. We recently talked about how social media addiction can bring more stress into our lives. After that presentation, I tried to stay off social media for a few days and noticed myself being more energized and happy.

Recently, my phone quit working in some ways and I did a factory reset on it, which eliminated everything on it, including my pictures, music, apps, etc. So I had no social media apps on my phone which allowed me to not be checking them every hour or two because I simply couldn’t. With that being said, this past week has honestly flew by for me simply because I am not consumed or worried about what other people or doing and it’s making my life easier.

I personally want to delete all of my social media within the next year because I feel that it is just a distraction. I want to be free worried of what other people are doing in their lives and just focus on myself. A lot of the time, people make themselves seem like a better person than they actually are on social media as well. All throughout my life I have found myself consumed into my electronics and constantly looking at some sort of screen, whether it’s a phone, TV, or computer. I am striving to make a change for my mental health. After the presentation on screen use and stress, I have found myself checking social media less and less, and I hope to eventually make it stop.

Image result for no social media

 

Image retrieved from : https://www.hercampus.com/school/salisbury/how-no-social-media-challenge-impacted-me  –  This is a good article about how someone did the 30-day no social media challenge and how it made them focus better, enjoy the moment, and the amount of free time that opened up in their schedule.

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

 

As the days go by, I learn more about what it really means to be happy. Most people think that it’s doing things you love without bad things happening. What it really is about is learning more about yourself and what you can do to positively impact your life while still living through the bad times.

Substance abuse has never been a part of my life and I don’t really know anyone else around me who has an issue with substance abuse. It was still informative knowing ways to deal with those that do. Emotional resilience is something that is very big on my life since I have been through a wide range of life changes, issues, and events. I usually do very poorly when it comes to handling these events because I have not experienced them as well as not knowing what to do. Ignoring them does not work at all since they will only come back later to haunt you. I have learned how to better cope with these problems that come up and strengthen my own resolve. Emotional resilience in the digital age is also a hard topic because I at one point was very addicted to being on my phone or the computer all the time and not doing anything else. I have learned in the past few years to cut back and talk with people in person rather than through a screen. The things I have changed in recent times were mostly through my own understanding of how to better deal with life as it comes along though the lectures have given me new ways to improve myself even further. The exercises have given me a great way to figure out what I truly needed and not what I felt like doing without reason.

I picked this image because denial was what I was doing far too often a few years ago to deal with what happened throughout my life. Living inside of a box is not preferable to seeing the whole world.

Image Source:  https://ondemandleadership.com/wp-content/uploads/emotional-resilience-banner1.jpg

 

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

These past few weeks I was able to learn a lot about myself. The topics that we discussed really hit home for me. It allowed me to see things in perspective and I was able to identify my area of weaknesses. We learned a lot about self-love and how do develop healthy habits in order to maintain a healthy mind. Each class period we learned about many different topics such as, Mindfulness, Cognitive Biases, Personality Traits, and Emotional Resilience. We were able to dig deeper and learn about our inner selves. These topics are really important and they all relate to one another. The topics we learned about during the first five weeks of class gave us a better understanding what we are currently learning about. In the beginning we learned about human behavior, anxiety, depression, etc. and all of these things are significant to weeks 6-10. At the end of each class, I tried to implement some of the new strategies and things that I learned that day.

The topic that I was really able to connect with was “emotional resilience” by Nina Schroder. During this week I learned how important resilience is and how much of an impact it can have on your mental health. We had to put away our phones to avoid distractions to help us stay focused. During this week, I was also able to learn how much of an impact social media has on our mental health. Over the years, studies have shown an increase of anxiety and depression in young teens due to social media. In one of our readings, “Relationship of smartphone use severity with sleep quality, depression, and anxiety in university students”, I gained a lot of insight on how our phones really affect us. Social media has become a big part of our lives, however, excess use of screen time can affect the way that our brains function. I personally struggle with anxiety and  can see how social media can definitely be a trigger. After this lecture, I decided to make some changes in my life. I no longer use my phone during class and while I’m studying. I get a lot more done without my phone and I feel great about myself. By the end of the week, I received a notification on my phone telling me that my screen time was down 37% and I’m honestly so proud of myself. Due to this change, I now have a healthy sleeping schedule and I never thought I would see this day. Social media has definitely impacted all of our lives and it’s clear on why mental health has declined severely in young adults and teenagers.

With that being said, I now understand the importance of being mindful and staying focused on the present moment. Mindfulness and emotional resilience definitely go hand in hand with each other. Moving forward, I aim to implement mindfulness exercises throughout my day because I’ve seen how much of positive impact it has had on my mental health. I believe that this will also allow me build my emotional resilience, which will overall help me with my anxiety. This class has helped me in so many different ways. I always look forward to lectures and I can’t wait to learn more about the science of happiness. The image that I selected represents this post perfectly because it shows what I had to do in order to stay focused.

Photo Source: www.feliciagrant.com/social-media-and-news-fuel-negativity/keep-calm-and-turn-off-social-media/

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

As we transition from being dependent adolescents who have lived and identified ourselves mainly with our friends and interests. We begin to explore a broader view of the world and become more exposed to adulthood. From needing to learn how to do the paperwork and filing taxes to become more independently financed but in educational debt. During this transitional stage where we are exposed to the stigma and stereotypes of college life where substance use is more prominent and where with the technological advancements, become engrossed in social media. We become both more open-minded to the world’s diversity but at the same time, become more engrossed and sensitive to ourselves and others.

This is likely due to the neuroplasticity we all have been using throughout our lives to adapt to the various situations we face. Whether you were someone sheltered and censored to the world, someone who had dealt with a lot of trauma and strive or even someone who had their future planned out for them since a very young age. We all have lived unique lives, gaining a resiliency to our own experiences and lived on learning through adversity. And whether it was a difficult climb or an easy pass road, we had people influencing us. Whether it was detrimental, like glorified and synthetic portrayals of the ideal human being, or it was beneficial, like supportive friends and family who you could feel secure with and depend on. Our perception and interpretations of the world we are exposed us can influence how we live our lives. For example, a person who is only exposed to media which only shows the highs in life compared to a person who had exposure to only the pain and suffering. Or how there can be people who can hate an entire race because of someone else’s biased preaching but there can be people who can dedicate their lives to planting trees, knowing that they may not gain recognition or appreciation for their work.

As we become more engrossed and manipulated on the technology, media, and self-intruistic corporation’s ploys.  We become more depressed when comparing our lives to those who seem likethey are happy for the moments they share, we become more anxious because of the competitive society we live in where we can be replaced by thousands of others, and we become more sleep deprived as we escape reality, procrastinate or try to keep up with a workload larger than we can handle while retaining our sanity.  We become addicted to certain behaviors and substances which became normative with culture. Whether it is the fix of coffee in the morning because you had no REM sleep or it is the reliance of media to escape the social awkwardness that exists because we assume if we aren’t doing something someone else is judging us. We strive to reach the point where we are successful and happy, where the dedication and work we put into now will have lasting payoffs.

But happiness is fleeting, a temporary state of mood and by the time we realize it, by the time we are discarded because we have worked to retirement hoping to have achieved our dreams and forgotten by the younger generation. We wonder where has the time went, like how we wonder how has the semester gone past the halfway point or wonder how we don’t have enough hours in the day. But it isn’t too late, it’s never too late to learn and change our lifestyle. To participate in moments of mindfulness like Mindful Monday where on the 11th for a session we were fatigued by the daylight savings. But after 20 minutes of checking back in with our bodies and listening to the guided meditation noticed changes in us being less stiff and craving nature. To want to walk around in the park, lay under the shade or a tree or to simply meet up with friends without worrying about our next obligation.

Like in previous classes where we have learned about forgiving others and ourselves, our strengths, and mindfulness. There is a common trend of how things we don’t think about or don’t give priority to are often the most important. Like how one of my professors have said some of the most meaningful things we do in life can be the least recognized. How we ended up having huge corporations dominate small family owned ones, how we ended up prioritizing other’s opinions about ourselves and how we ended up forgoing many of our childhood dreams into something we can make a living on. Just like Bob Ross where he devoted 20 years to the air force, being in the position of yelling at others to push themselves and work. He found that he was unhappy and stressed. Leaving the way of life he has learned since enlisting while 18 years old, promising to never shout again.To then dedicated to a life of painting and meticulously lead his company and show, to paint three copies of the same painting that episode and to spend the night rehearsing every word. He loved what he did and did it the way he wanted, making all the different decades later even though in the beginning it had to even save money by not cutting his hair. Just like him and many others who have followed our their own ambitions, invested in controversial discoveries that we accept as common knowledge today, and have died unrecognized for their innovation. We can be mindful and self-innovated in our lives and learn to live a life worth living.

Blog Post #2

Blog Post #2

Photo from link below

Resilience: A skill your child really needs to learn (and what you can do to help)

Over these last couple weeks, we have learned a lot about personalities and how to assess our own and improve them.  One of those ways is through resiliency.  Resiliency to me is coming back from something negative, and coming back strong.  An example I thought of was overcoming addiction. The addiction can really be anything, whether drug or alcohol related, or my personal favorite example, social media.  We learned about four specific parts of addiction and I will use social media as an example for them.

 

1: Impulsivity: if you are constantly checking and refreshing social medias and it is affecting your life.

2: Anxiety Sensitivity: when a post or posts of yours does not get many likes and upsets you

3: Sensations: this is like the feeling of when you get those likes you want

4: No hope: realizing the need for likes or attention could just spiral.

 

Now resiliency could come into play here because to get away from the social media addiction, you will have to have self-control and overcome the urges to check your texts or snapchats and all that jazz. This connects to another thing we have learned in class, how depression and anxiety plays a role in your state of mind.  If social media has such a strangle hold on your day to day life, you will probably be pretty on edge without it and it could be upsetting.  This is where mindfulness can come into play.  Mindfulness helps us relax to our surroundings and suppress the stressors.  This is almost like a piece of resilience as well because you are overcoming what is going on.

 

 

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/24629129182559372/

The biggest thing this class has made me realize is how important it is to eliminate stressors.  When we do mindfulness, I like to have my eyes open because I can see what is making a certain noise and I feel like I can subconsciously tone it out.  For instance, one of my friends breathes really heavily, I can get over that by shifting my focus off of that onto the activity.  Sometimes it is focusing on what my feet feel on the ground, or the smell of the warm Chic-fil-a sandwich in front of me.  It is that idea that I can actually use when I sleep.  When my roommates are loud downstairs I just focus on my breathing and comfort level.  For me that would the change I have made in my life due to this class, normally I would just yell at them to quiet down or just go hang with them until they get quiet.

Learn You to Protect You

Learn You to Protect You

As this class continues, I learn more and more. The recurring point I seem to grasp from this class is being aware of who you are and where you stand in your mental health. Mental health is very important to me as it effected my father’s side of the family heavily. I really value the daily mindfulness activities we complete every lecture. Still, to this day, the breathing in longer than your breathing out is my all time favorite. This is the only mindfulness exercise that really works for me. Doing the mindfulness practice assignment, was what made me realize how impactful that exercise is to me. I immediately notice a difference after I complete it in comparison to before.

My favorite “series” from this unit was emotional resilience, presented by Nina Schroder. I believe education around emotional resilience and how to increase it are very important to one’s well-being. Stress is inevitable. It is crucial  for one to learn how to cope with different stressors, because the avoidance pathway is not always available. While one is seeking to increase their emotional resilience, they are allowed to achieve a better understanding of their self. I believe you learn the most about yourself when you are under stress. I am not usually a person who writes down their goals, I rather manifest in them internally. During lecture, the speaker asked us to fill out an emotional resilience worksheet that required us to write down our goals, strengths, weaknesses and important attributes to us. I really enjoyed completing this worksheet it allowed me to take time to self- assess where I am and where I want to be in reference to my personal emotional resilience.

In addition to our reading on Relationship of smartphone use severity with sleep quality, depression, and anxiety in university students, Nina Schroder’s also discussed the link between smartphone use and happiness. This was extra interesting to me because I really enjoy Instagram and Twitter, they are my daily laugh and it satisfies my creative side when I don’t have time to. I personally don’t envy people I see, nor does anyone make me feel subconscious about myself. But I do experience severe procrastination when I use social media especially when I know I have important things to do. Ten minutes will turn into an hour so quick and so much time is wasted. Although I’m not usually on my phone during class, I really enjoyed the disconnecting for 50 minutes exercise from week 10. I enjoyed it more for my classmates than myself. I loved seeing everyone so engaged and into the information being presented. Once competing disconnecting for 50 minutes during class you realize you don’t miss that much from social media or your phone in general. I do understand the circumstance are different for others, myself included. I have a lot of important things that I sometimes miss when I disconnect but it’s not serious enough to continuously be on my phone during class. Even when writing this essay, I kept stopping to check my phone and every time I caught myself scrolling, I locked my phone and put it down. Another way I try to keep myself off my phone is putting it on do not disturb, so the notifications won’t bother me while I work.

I selected this image because it is a great representation of emotional resilience. It reminded me of this saying I know “a rose from concrete”. It is a beautiful flower growing out of cracked concrete, symbolizing even in the worst conditions if you have the resilience you will survive and prosper.

Picture Source: http://dianepenelope.com/emotional-resilience-building/

BLOG #2

BLOG #2

During these weeks, we looked at quite a few different and interesting topics that helped us get to know ourselves better. Learn your strengths and weaknesses. For myself, I think the most important thing was SURPS, because it was this survey that helped me to know myself much better, I discovered many new facts about myself. Of course, I’m going to use the advice that the professor said in class. Namely, I will pass this survey again, but in the next semester, it will help me to find out if I managed to draw conclusions and change myself for the better. Just as important, I think that people are now too dependent on social networks and I find it terrible. Only in the network, we can be anyone. We can write nasty things, insult, “trolling”, you really don’t have to be responsible for your statements! And the social network attracts with its versatility. It allows you to read, watch photos and movies, listen to music and share your experience. People spend all their time in social networks and do not notice how much they influence them. I want to give an example. Social networks are a place where we often express our outrage about something, from poor-quality services to political problems. This allows us to let off steam but turns our news feed into an endless stream of negative. We write negative posts and receive negative comments, and they only worsen our mood even more.

BUT Definitely it is impossible to say that social media is evil. Thanks to them, we can always be close to those who are far away, use them for professional purposes, find like-minded people. However, the time has come when it is time to use social media to consciously and skillfully defend oneself from their side effects, as well as learn to recognize them.

I’m not very dependent on social networks or the phone. But after the lessons in the classroom without a phone, I would like to change myself. Try to live one day without a phone and social networks. I think this will improve my mood a lot.

The photo I chose strongly reflects how people are addicted to social networks. I would like to give everyone advice. Keep smart phones away at parties with friends; just enjoy success or happy moments in the lives of your friends (and you can write to them about it in a personal message, and not send a photo of yourself on the beach in Miami).

Life Changes

Life Changes

Week 6 was about getting to know yourself, as well as during week 3 we answered a survey and got a profile of our characteristics that are most valued to us. Mine was creativity, ingenuity, originality, honesty and gratitude. These are a part of our personal traits. More so, we had a speaker coming in talking about substance use disorders during week 6. In this class we tied together some patterns of how our characteristics may lead us to use a certain type of drug over another. It was interesting to learn how your natural behavior can “crave” a specific drug compared to another, and how your personality can relate to the stimulation of the drug. During that week we spoke about positive relationships and positive recovery, and how those two areas can relate to your personal behavior. You may need a different type of company or support than another person needs. We learned that we are all different in how we respond to our environment and drugs, and that we should accept that we all need different care.The theme of week 7 was Mindfulness. Through the reading during this week we learned about how mindfulness can impact many parts of our life. For example, how incorporating just a few minutes of mindfulness every day in our workplace can improve our performance tremendously, such as getting tasks easily done, being more efficient during the workhours, because of a better ability to focus.

Learning about myself during week 6 and starting to practice more mindfulness has definitely made a huge positive impact on me. I think more positively on my tasks ahead that I have to get done, and I feel more rejuvenated, when I have to work, because I take small breaks in between using mindfulness exercise such as “the 5 senses”, or gazing through a window – not really focusing on anything. Relating to week 7’s mindfulness, during the first weeks of class we also touched the area of mindfulness and how it can improve our overall well-being, which is something I have had positive responses with. More so, exercising and mindfulness are two components that can improve your ability to fall asleep more easily and stay asleep during the night. Looking back from now, I have already come into a way better sleeping pattern, and I believe that practicing mindfulness and exercising have helped towards that.

In relation to week 3, which was about mood states, my good mood has increased after getting sufficient sleep and practicing mindfulness. I am a student athlete, so I almost work out daily, so I have not felt a big difference in that area, because it is already a part of my day. However, definitely incorporating the changes, what I have learned in class; practicing mindfulness and getting at least 8 hours sleep every night has helped me to increase my overall wellbeing. As well, as being more aware of my mood swings, and target them in a positive way, by for example playing music, talk with a friend or family, cook a healthy meal, go workout, or draw a painting has made me able to keep a steadier mood and being happier.

What change I also would like to include is my adaption of forgiveness. I had noticed that I had a lot of demons inside, in which I am dealing with much better by forgiving them. In addition to that, it has made me be able to have mostly only positive relationships in my life. Another interesting comparison or where two things can relate to each other, is the two topics “forgiveness” from week 4 and “resilience” from week 9. I have notices that being able to forgive as much as possible has led me to into feeling more resilience. Meaning forgiving another person made me led go out the poison inside of me, as if I am cured, and my shield got stronger, my “shield of forgiveness”.

This past week, week 10 has been significantly captivating due to the topic in my case. “Emotional Resilience in the Digital Age”. When the speaker spoke about her research on this topic on Monday 18th, I could make a lot of correlations to my well-being and the use of digital medias. As well as, when the professor and the TA showed the graph in class today, Friday March 22nd, about the relationship with young people’s happiness and use of social media, a bell rang inside of me. I think I have gotten very used to pulling my phone up and checking it that I have a hard time admitting it can put stress on me. However, when I had to put away my phone for the three class periods, I experienced many positive outcomes such as; increased ability to focus, ability to better assimilate the information given in class, as well as a better understanding of my classmates’ point of view, which overall gives me a more in dept insight in the study area.

The Image below pictures a butterfly’s life cycle. As a butterfly goes through changes, so do humans. I think one of the most essential characteristics of a well-functioning human is to be able to adapt to its environment. We do it every day, no matter if we want it or not, it is simply a part of our genes, in order to survive. Our bodies go through changes and the more we realize it is a part of life, the better I believe we will live.

Image is taken from DK Images

SOH-Fall18 – Coppola Theory  2019-03-22 11:43:05

SOH-Fall18 – Coppola Theory 2019-03-22 11:43:05

Peaceful Waterfront Zen Rest Relax Mindfulness

over the past couple weeks of class, we have discussed mental health issues, substance use, anxiety, and the problems that smartphones along with other technology can cause on a person’s mental health and wellbeing. With those topics in mind, I find that they all have some sort of relationship with each item. I think the easiest way to explain the relationship is just by seeing that these are all things that deal with the mind/brain; I could even say that the items can seem addictions based. In a day an age where we, as humans, are glued to the convenience of technology and our smart devices, I think that there is a growing concern of the consequences of these great technologies. 

We all have or know someone that has a smartphone and that we have about 4-5 top applications that we use the most but because of the ease of using them, but there are some consequences that come with it and has been seen more over the years. There has been an increase in sleep deprivation, depression, anxiety, and substance use over the years and this could be due to the growing access to smart devices. Children and adults these days are often so consumed with their technology and don’t realize that those technologies could be due to a lack of sleep, depression, and anxiety. Many of us will put on a front so it doesn’t seem like we’re dealing with those issues because we see other people happy and doing with we can’t do and that it’ll have an effect on our mental wellbeing. 

We all know that we as people need certain things in order to survive, and many people will argue that we need technology in order to survive but we have been surviving for thousands of years without electronic technologies and have recently become more reliant on it. We all just need to take a break. We all need to get back out and do what we used to do when we were children. Go out and play, go out and make a friend, go out and be in nature! Often times I feel like people look over mindfulness and think that it won’t have any benefits but it has tremendous benefits for people. I believe that since I started doing more mindfulness that I have been a better and happier person just for checking in with myself and my feelings. 

Blog post #2

Blog post #2

I think that the topic of resilience, anxiety disorders, and relationships with substance that we talked about in class are similar because they all deal with mental health. I think that individuals with good mental health have better resilience and help individual’s being less anxious. I also think the topic of anxiety and depression is common because a lot of individuals with depression are more likely to feel anxious. I believe that the way to understand the science of happiness is to practice all the topics and meditation exercise on class. I think that the last couple of weeks have allowed me to work on my breathing and try to use my key skills to work on me being a better person. I have started to mediate every day and I feel like that has helped me to remain calm a lot longer than it normally would. I think the image that I choose helped represent the post because yoga is one of the things that helps me to control my anxiety and when I was struggling with my mental health it helped me to reflect on my lifestyle.

Website: https://yogideets.com/2018/04/30/yoga-for-mental-health/

Science of Happiness Blog Post 1

Science of Happiness Blog Post 1

MENTAL HEALTH AND MINDFULNESS: HOW THOSE FACTORS AFFECT THE MILLENNIAL

For the last 5 weeks in class, we talked about how genetics influence someone’s mental health and behaviors, the cause and effects of depression, anxiety, and mood states, positive relationships with other people in our lives and self resilience. I think all in all, these topics overlap in the aspect that they all can relate to everyone and their every day lives. As young adults and most of us being millennial, we deal with a lot of stress from school, work, and our personal lives. We all can fall under the pressure to fit in and be accomplished in society so a lot of mental problems will arise. Some people are better at dealing with stress than others due to their genetic factors and environment they are raised in. This is where positive relationships can really make or break for those who are going through mental problems, when you have a good support system, you are more likely to get through your problems than those who do not have good influences around to guide them in the right directions.
I think I was really surprised when we first talked about how genetics could really influence someone’s impulsiveness, coping mechanisms, and mental health. I always thought that depression and anxiety were things that come from external factors like bad environments, stressful and life changing problems, etc. I did not ever think that some people could have a bigger disposition to having depression, anxiety, and other mental health problems.
When we learned about mindfulness, I started trying to apply the concept of it to my every day life. I try to be mindful of my goals and do things for the present so that my future outcome would be less stressful. Though the meditative aspect of it was hard for me to get along with, the purpose behind the concept of mindfulness and focusing on what’s in front of you really helped me improve my balance in schoolwork and productivity. I think a lot of people my age are distracted by multiple things (like social media) and they often compare their wellness and accomplishments to others without realizing how unhealthy it is to do so (and we often do it subconsciously). Because we are always connected to what’s going on in society, we often forget to take care of ourselves and remember to live our own lives. This leads to a lot of stress, anxiety, and depression. Some people become disconnected with themselves that they do not know how to balance out their lives. Mindfulness helps one realign their core values and re-evaluate their life goals so they can focus on what’s in front of them and not what’s way ahead.


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A New Start in Life

A New Start in Life

 

The topics that we went over in the past couple of weeks truly helped us define our inner selves. We were able to determine what our weaknesses are, as well as our strengths. When discussing our SURPS interpretation, we were able to figure out if our personality is capable of leading us to an increase in substance abuse. This can correlate with mindfulness because if we are often aware of our emotions and reactions we can control our anxiety levels as well as feeling the need to use substances. Also learning about emotional resilience plays a huge role in this as well. The more that you are unable to “bounce back” from a situation, the more you become dependent on situations that will uplift you and make you feel better about yourself. For example, when talking about the digital age of our generation, I feel that it is so much harder for us to have personal resilience because we are so concerned with acceptance from social media. We feel that as long as other people’s opinions are positive about us, one’s self opinion does not matter. That is our substance abuse… social media. We are addicted to being in the limelight, which in turn takes us away from being mindful of our feelings and also of our surroundings. Getting to know yourself and resilience may differ in some cases as well. When you are starting to find yourself, you may not find it easy to “pick yourself up from your boot straps” and go on about life. It may be difficult to even think of ways to show optimism and adapt to significant sources of stress. So, your resilience may be limited in certain aspects or even not used at all just yet.

Within these past few weeks I have definitely learned ways to feel better about myself. I really connected with the mindfulness exercise. In the mornings I was able to give myself 5-10 minutes of quiet time so I can be more in tune with myself and everything around me. Other than mindfulness I made sure to detach myself from my electronics an hour before I go to bed because I determined that I really wasn’t missing out on anything important but great sleep! I’ve also learned that I’ve been through a lot, and I need to start giving myself praise for the things that I have went through. I gave myself a low percentage of resilience because I didn’t think I did a lot to earn that. Now learning that my resilience should be much higher, boosts my confidence. My plan is to try and manage my stress levels. If I can put aside 10 minutes every day and just acknowledge how far I have made it, I really think this could take me farther in life.

The reason why I chose this picture is because I have a habit of saying that I cant do something whenever I am stressed out. One thing I am going to change is to start speaking more positive, starting with myself.

Blog #1

Blog #1

For this blog post assignment, I want to post specifically about what I truly enjoyed learning the most or what made a big impact on myself. Obviously, all of the information from the readings and lectures are important and all are intertwined but I found a few things that stuck out the most to me. I think that the genetic influences on behavior are extremely important and I feel like they are often overlooked because of this stigma that we can’t own what was genetically given to us, but I  think it’s very important for us to own it. When our behavior is affected by our genetics it seems like it can be impossible to deal with but I think we as a society should just see if we could find a way to help ourselves and our of friends so that they can live comfortably.  We can’t change our genetics and I feel like if we just embrace what was given to us, the people who love us will still accept us no matter what.

When we discussed depression, anxiety, and mood states I think this is a very important topic because very rarely do people tend to empathize with people in different mood states. I think that it’s also important for people to acknowledge the state our mood is in because it sets the tone for so many things from how productive we will be to how our day will go and how we also interact with other people. When we address how our moods are it gives us the power and option to change how it is and how to move on from those struggles. This definitely makes me think of positive psychology because in a way you’re changing your mindset to better you’re mental wellbeing. I’m a strong believer that you can make the best out of any bad situation. Changing certain habits, and actions can do great wonders.

Cultivating our strengths was the trickiest for myself, especially since my top five strength definitely wasn’t what I had expected to get. I think that now that I have a better understanding of the strengths that I got and how to use them to my advantage it helps me out a lot more but it was not easy to implement something I was not very happy or proud of.

Science of Happiness Blog #1

Science of Happiness Blog #1

                                       

In the first five weeks of class, we learned a lot about mental health and wellness as well as the attributes we are the strongest at and the genetic influences that could potentially showcase different illnesses and behavior. Keyes’ model of complete mental health/flourishing explained the mental illness and mental health is not either or but a continuum. You can be flourishing with a mental illness or languishing which is low mental health and low mental illness. Genetic influences on behavior help the nature vs. nurture argument. You can be predisposed for a certain behavior but the environmental factors are what makes it come out and express the behavior. Genes can also influence mental health and well being. Dr. Sood discussed Depression, anxiety, and mood states. She explained how depression was episodic, mostly spanning 6-24 months in the depression stage. She also explains that anxiety is common. We also talked about positive psychology and self-care and PERMA.

I found the anxiety and depression lectures very interesting. I learn that anxiety and depression are a lot more common than I previously thought. I also learned that mental health and illness can coexist but that doesn’t mean the people doesn’t need to be looked after and supported. The activities in class that I enjoy are the word bubbles because can see how impactful a thought is in relation to other peoples. The more people agree the bigger the word is. I like this because I know I personally don’t like talking in class but this still makes my voice heard in a way.

 

 

 

Image: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/836614068251449041/?lp=true

#1 Reflection Blog SOH

#1 Reflection Blog SOH

This class is such a new take on learning for me. Learning about different topics each class period and then connecting them all together in different aspects of education and day to day life. I found it intriguing how much psychology can make you better and break you down depending on how you step through situations that make you, you. Human behavior can link to positive psychology and it can also lead to mental disorders and underlying illnesses.

I learned new information about forgiveness in the past 5 weeks. That lecture was by far my favorite because it taught me how to evaluate situations outside of my feelings and put myself in other peoples shoes. I also learned so much about the power of forgiveness on the mental state based on the story of the man who lectured.

The activities and items I learned and talked about in class I applied to my day to day life. Positive psychology and all that it stands for. Especially self care, with PERMA. I applied inspiration, gratitude, and love mostly in how I carry myself and it is slowly but surely making a difference in my everyday mental state.

https://unsplash.com/search/photos/daisy

BLOG POST 1

The topics that we have learned so far this semester have been aimed towards making us more aware of our general happiness and giving us tools and resources to help us improve ourselves mentally.  We talked about conditions that are genetically linked and I learned that it is normal to see conditions like depression or alcoholism manifest in multiple members of the same family tree.  I believe that positive psychology was one of the most impressionable topics we covered because it taught me to embrace my strengths, such as humor and leadership and that instead of settling for being average content, I should strive for actual happiness.  One of the most eye opening topics we discussed was automatic thoughts.  I have used the lessons we learned about automatic thoughts to better the communication aspect of my current relationship and I have experienced a much happier relationship as a result.

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

The topics we have discussed int the past five weeks are all interrelated. The “genetic influences on behavior” class  related to the class on “depression, anxiety, and mood states” because it showed that moods had a genetic factor and you suffer from certain mental disorders, it is likely that someone else in your family suffers from that same disorder. I think the “introduction to positive psychology” class and the “cultivating our strengths” class relate to each other because you can practice positive psychology by embracing and using your strengths. By focusing on your strengths you create a better self image and that is included in positive psychology. Some new information I learned was that autism was genetic. I thought it was a random intellectual disability, but it is actually more heritable than most mental disorders. The survey that we took that showed our strengths was a fun exercise that we did. It helped me use my strengths in a new way. I invited someone to lunch with me and we have become decent friends now. I swiped this girl into Shafer one day for lunch and we had a good conversation. Now we meet up once a week for lunch every Wednesday.

Image result for lunch date cartoon

 

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

These first five weeks of class have been helping me understand the bigger idea of mental health being this complex thing that’s always a work in progress. All different factors go in to our mental health and some of it is out of our control because of our genes. The better we take care of our mental health and all of the little things that play a part, the better chance we have at being happy.

The main points that I got from class are positivity and gratitude go a long way in any situation. Keyes’ findings with his model of mental health showed a correlation between people having success in their lives (positive outcomes) and those people being more positive in their daily lives. The speaker we had in class this past week that spoke about forgiveness really helped my understanding of gratitude and how to look at the bright side of every situation. My dad always tells me to be as grateful as I can for everything that happens to me and it always helps hearing it from another person too for the message to really stick.

The activity that we did in class where we voted on the different percentage intervals for how much we thought certain mental illnesses could be passed down generations really opened my eyes to how much can really be out of our hands in terms of mental health. Because of all the factors going in to one’s overall mental health, I look at the whole situation as one of those multiple venn diagrams. Each part that affects the whole of mental health has its own circle and some factors work with other factors, some don’t. At the end of the day, they all connect in the middle to create one’s mental health. 

Picture source:

http://under.fontanacountryinn.com/triple-venn-diagram-blank/

Fall 2018 SOH Blog #1

Fall 2018 SOH Blog #1

Over the course of this class we had many guest speakers come and go to shine light on certain topics ranging from self exploring our own strengths and weaknesses to a more medical take on mental illnesses affecting those around us. Overall these different takes, personal stories, and statistics revolving around a “healthier” and more positive you. In the beginning of this course it felt like every class was new because the topics were always “different.” However, to take the time and connect back to how everything, regardless of its context, in a way seems to flow together. First, Keyes’ model of mental health  shows that just because someone is classified (or medically diagnosed) with a mental illness doesn’t mean that same person will have low mental health. However, the same goes for someone who doesn’t have a mental illness but, still show signs of low mental health. Now going onto specifics- A person suffering from depression, anxiety, and mood states can still be highly functioning and live just as great lives as any other person. As humans, we can’t but hear specific things from a whole that “resonates” with you because of the fact that you either experienced it or share empathy to it. Basically, you like to hear what you want to hear. When Dr. Sood went in detail of the more medical portion of mental illnesses I felt that the information presented was something specifically that our age group and generation need to hear because they are either affected or know someone who is. This not limiting to a medical diagnosis of mental illnesses but, daily symptoms such as anxiety being a normal (and can be positive) part in many people’s lives. I couldn’t tell if because Dr. Sood came twice- thus making her memorable because she was physically in our classroom more than the other speakers OR that this information “resonated” and/or pertained to me. Mental illness has always been a topic that has carried a heavy burden in my family, including me. Therefore, to be able to personally relate with classmates and through these presentations i’m reminded of how much evidence of potential everyone has regardless of the biological, medical, and emotional state they’re in. I feel that these class discussions are done just to be “done” but, a lot comes out of it and it’s crazy how talking about these topics open the floor to make it so that classmates can easily and openly talk about things (even really personal ones!)

 

 

-Sharon Kwon

 

Source

 

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So far this class has given me a much better understanding of the science behind happiness. I was very intrigued by the nature vs nurture discussion seeing I believe that nurture most likely plays the biggest role in our mental status but nature also plays a quite important role as well! I was also interested in the automatic thoughts portion of class because I believe if we take time to try and walk ourselves through our thought process we can avoid much unneeded stress. Growing up with anger issues I personally have to walk myself through my own brain whenever something upsets me and it does wonders though some emotions are unavoidable sometimes.

Blog post #1

Blog post #1

These past 5 weeks have been so fast and I already learned a lot in this class. Something I really like is the mindfulness exercises we do before class because this really helps me to forget all my worries for a little and empty my mind. I liked the VIA strengths survey because I got to see what my strengths are and to pay more attention to my weaknesses. I think that all the topics we covered for this far are related to each other, for example, I think to forgive someone you have to have control over your own thoughts first. Something surprising I learned was the results of the VIA survey. Something else I learned is that you can be happy and depressed at the same time depending on mental health, it depends how much you can deal with. In class, the professor compared this with filling up jars. In life, we will have to deal with negative events too which good mental health will help us to get through these. I really liked the powerpoint about forgiveness. The speaker’s message really got me thinking and taking revenge on something/someone makes you an even worse person. Holding grudges will never make things better and you will be the person suffering from it.

 

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First Five Weeks

First Five Weeks

The topics we have gone through the first five weeks can easily relate to each other. We went through talking about anxiety and depression for example, how they go together, but also how the differ from each other. Furthermore, we talked about how happiness can de defined and more so understood and felt. On top of that, how mindfulness can help you to accept all thoughts showing up in your mind throughout the day. We were taught several techniques to handle unhappy moments. Basically all the topics covered the last five weeks can be related, since they all are dealing with coping strategies to keep you on a “happy flow feeling”.

It surprised me that foregiveness can be such a huge way of dealing with emotions. After listening to the speaker on Friday February 8th, I genuinely got enlighten about how important and helpful forgiveness is in any aspects of life. It can certainly help not to get stuck on something for too long, and to ease the process of moving on.

The breathing exercises have helped me tremendously. They assist me to complete my tasks during the day, and help me to have a healthy mindset throughout the day. In addition to the breathing, being grateful for what you have each day have helped me as well.

References:

Image taken from Flickr

Science of Happiness Blog Post #1

Science of Happiness Blog Post #1

Our class gets treated to speakers coming in and discussing the “Science of Happiness” with us. I believe that the lectures along with the assignments we’ve done all somehow highlight one’s overall daily activities, moods, or overall well being are affected by their mental health.  After all, according to Keyes, mental health is more than just the absence of a mental illness. Seeing the different dimensions that reflect “flourishing” mental health does explain why mental health is more complex than no mental illness.  Each person’s mental health has over time somehow been affected positively or negatively. Understanding how and what aids in improving one’s mental health ultimately can improve the overall health and wellbeing of any one person.  I myself wasn’t aware of how interconnected mental health was with all the other aspects in my life.  It is rather mind-blowing.

It was quite eye opening to learn that  things like divorce, religiosity, happiness, and even alcoholism all may be influenced by genetics. I do believe that although that’s whats been studied, that it doesn’t necessarily determine anyone’s future.  Putting in effort and enthusiasm to make the best out of life and seek assistance when you need it can also lead you in the right direction for happiness.

The video that was shown to us of strangers writing a thank you letter to somebody of their choosing demonstrated positive psychology. This particular clip was rather heart warming to see. Positive psychology intervention is said to increase one’s well being.  It’s amazing how meaningful something so simple as writing/receiving a gratitude letter with that genuine feeling of gratefulness behind it can turn a day around.

The several moment of mindfulness exercises done in class have significantly impacted my overall mood during the day. I enjoy the feeling of slight relief knowing that I at least have my breathing in control. Taking those 2-4 minutes is now necessary for me in order to continue the remainder of my day.   https://43nnuk1fz4a72826eo14gwfb-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Breathing-Exercise_Blog.jpg

 

The Active Journey

The Active Journey

Blog Post #1

 

Throughout the first five weeks of this marvelous course, we have covered numerous topics relevant to the science of happiness and what the science behind it entails. When I first signed up for this class I didn’t know what to expect from the course content. I am already a psychology major but we’ve never gone over the overall well-being / the science of being happy in the psychology classes I have completed. So far, this course has taught me more than just the details behind being happy, it’s also given me mindfulness exercises to use in the classroom or in regular activities to calm myself down.  It has also introduced me to the true definition of the science of happiness and the impacts positive psychology.

To begin, this class has focused on the overall well-being of what it takes to be happy. Keyes Model of Mental Health has shown me that happiness is a non-dualistic process, it is a continuum of the absence of mental health and the presence of flourishing. The presence of flourishing within one’s life is a key component in growth, and growth is one of the first steps in the process of happiness. Flourishing builds experience which then builds knowledge, these three build a healthy overall well-being in life. I find this model of mental health relatable to positive psychology, another topic we discussed, because both of these concepts focus on the future of happiness. By this, I mean that both concepts focus on happiness as a sort of investment for your future, investment is key because it takes time for an investment to really work. We see investments work and fail every day, a true investment takes active participation just like the process of happiness. It takes time to be happy, just like it takes time for medications like SSRIs to work in the body, happiness is a great deal of investing and it can be a breeze depending on how much time you invest in the process. This also relates to cultivating our strengths because it takes an active mindset to cultivate our personal strengths in life. For cultivating our strengths, we can choose to flourish individually and socially in life or choose to languish in life. Languishing in life leads to poor overall well-being because it lacks interest to do anything, this leads to negative health habits and poor social health.

Throughout the course content, I have seen that most of the information relates to some of the psychology classes I have taken, for example: Abnormal Psychology, Physiological Psychology, and Developmental Psychology. During Abnormal Psychology, we never mentioned the science of happiness but we went over treatments for mental illnesses and negative lifestyles. This course on the science of happiness has helped relate treatments for mental health and I find this meaningful for the future because more people need to be aware of the details behind happiness. It’s a complex process but it’s possible, even if you are genetically predisposed, there are positive things you can do to change your life in the future. Cultivating our strengths helps connect us to others, builds our investment of life, and leads us to healthier life satisfaction. One of the activities that I have found most relevant and helpful to my life was where we had to name five things within our point of view, then name four things within our range that we can touch, then name three things you hear around you, and etc. I found this to be very helpful because it was so peaceful and set me in the perfect setting before class started, it really helped me put my mind in one spot and not worry about what was going to happen next. Another piece of information I found helpful was the acronym PERMA, which stands for positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, and accomplishment, this is the steps in building a healthy overall well-being life. It shows the human race that it takes active participation in building our most important investment of life, happiness. People that have fought through negative mental health are some of the strongest people alive. It’s not an easy journey and it builds one of the most important traits a human can possess, resilience. Adults with resilience are some of the most successful people out there, not in terms of money but in terms of life satisfaction.

 

The image I chose reflects the beauty of life that no one appreciates. Appreciation of life shows others the things they are missing. https://praying.tumblr.com/image/174998815100

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

In these few classes, I have learned a great deal on how happiness is defined. Every topic has its own ways of defining happiness while still being somewhat similar in a way. They all can affect your predisposition to being happy but each one of them is different in how it affects you. One may be genetic while another is environmental and psychological. What was new to me was just how much genetics can impact the possible mental disorders you can acquire such as depression, alcoholism, autism, and others. I also was unaware of how to deal with depression in general. Most people tend to just ignore it but tackling it head-on is an effective method. I have learned how to better assist myself in improving my overall happiness by using PERMA. I should take more time in my life for self-care instead of just helping others. Forgiveness is a key factor in ensuring that you can live in a better world since people make mistakes. It’s forgiving people that is the hardest. Everyone holds grudges when someone does something bad, but the true strength of happiness is forgiveness.

https://iskconnews.org/media/img_versions/2015/08-Aug/posthink_slideshow.jpg

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

I believe that the all of the topics that we have learned about have had some type of correlation related to mental health in general.  It was just different interpretations, and or different ways to be alert to them while also informing people on how to deal with them. To be honest I wasn’t very surprised about the information that I learned I think it was maybe just confirmation for me. I have not only dealt with some of these things but I have also caught notice to people dealing and or experiencing these things, so I think the information just made me aware. The survey activity where we had to rate things 1-5 really helped me understand myself better, also the test we did online. These activities made me look at how I carried myself overall. I also enjoyed mapping out my family tree, I felt as if that was very important to me because a lot of patterns and medical issues, history that I have, I learned that some of my family members had as well. The more I learn in this class the more I become concerned about my mental health, along with my family and friends. In conclusion, I really enjoy coming to this class because I actually get excited about learning this information. Not only am I learning all of this information but I am sharing it with my family and friends. I believe,Classes like this one are very important and should not be taken lightly.

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

The more I learn about Psychology and the further I go in my studies the more I learn that there are so many intersections and factors influencing our lives. What I find most interesting about psychology is how all these factors combine to produce our individual lives and the variety of ways that occurs. Aspects of Keye’s article on improving national mental health have been brought up in each of the topics we’ve covered so far.

An example of the two continua model Keye’s proposed was seen when we discussed genetic influences on behavior. 50% of experiences in life are influenced by genetics, 10% by the context of those experiences, and 40% by the intentional activity we do to navigate those experiences. The intentional activity we do is an example of maintenance of mental health outlined in the second strategy by Keyes.

Historically, the treatment method for mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety have focused on biological or chemical interventions to cure mental illness. This treatment approach neglects the importance of promoting healthy and fulfilling lives and instead highlighted that a deficit in mental functioning needed to be returned to a baseline and the absence of mental illness meant that an individual is mentally healthy. This idea reflects the main concerns Keyes discussed about the United States approach for addressing mental health and Positive Psychology’s mission to promote and facilitate well-being for everyone.

Positive Psychology was added to the field in 2000 to complement the existing model of understanding mental and physical challenges. Keyes proposal of a two continua model reinforces the positive psychology mission. The well-being theory of positive psychology includes 5 dimensions to promote psychological well-being for all people. These dimensions are believed to be intrinsically motivated and can be even more promotive when utilizing individual strengths. Applying and using individual strengths to promote well-being increases confidence in oneself and has lasting effects.

I was most surprised to learn the specific changes anxiety and depression can cause on the biological and physiological functioning of the body. I didn’t know that depression affected hormone levels like cortisol or could cause brain structures like the hippocampus to atrophy. This new information helped me understand the importance of using methods to help alleviate symptoms in addition to using antidepressants to treat anxiety and depression.

I’ve learned the most about research and its application during the guest speaker lectures. It’s difficult for me to understand the big picture of research and its implications when I’m reading articles because of how much information is in them. The speakers explain the research they focus on in a effective and concise manner that is easier to understand than when I’m reading.Happiness Mind Map

http://www.mindmapinspiration.com/happiness-mind-map-paul-foreman/

blog post 1

blog post 1

I feel the topics we have covered in this class all go together well. Why I think so is because  the general status of being happy has more to It then just your general feeling in the moment of thinking your happy. Their are many factors that go in to play that can make you “happy”. Putting together the fact of being able to forgive someone, being grateful for major influences, and the ability to help others who may not be happy can really tell you if your satisfied with where you are at and happy. If someone is satisfied with their place they are confident and happy enough to be able to help someone who I down in the dumps if they are not happy then that person ay just fell the same way or are with why that person is down and they both are having a bad outlook on life. Also the ability to forgive people is huge because if you are grumpy and not happy with the way your life is you will already start out mad and not be able to forgive because you will feel that nothing is going your way and you are unhappy with your life. Some info for me was the more you forgive or thank others for being an influence can factually make you happier with your life. The activity that has helped me the most was the survey I took at the very beginning that told me what my strengths are in my personality. It has helped me understand what I do well and how it makes me outlook on life and be happy

Image result for being happy

 

review of what I learned

review of what I learned

I feel the topics we have covered in this class all go together well. Why I think so is because  the general status of being happy has more to It then just your general feeling in the moment of thinking your happy. Their are many factors that go in to play that can make you “happy”. Putting together the fact of being able to forgive someone, being grateful for major influences, and the ability to help others who may not be happy can really tell you if your satisfied with where you are at and happy. If someone is satisfied with their place they are confident and happy enough to be able to help someone who I down in the dumps if they are not happy then that person ay just fell the same way or are with why that person is down and they both are having a bad outlook on life. Also the ability to forgive people is huge because if you are grumpy and not happy with the way your life is you will already start out mad and not be able to forgive because you will feel that nothing is going your way and you are unhappy with your life. Some info for me was the more you forgive or thank others for being an influence can factually make you happier with your life. The activity that has helped me the most was the survey I took at the very beginning that told me what my strengths are in my personality. It has helped me understand what I do well and how it makes me outlook on life and be happy

Image result for being happy

 

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

Throughout the first five weeks of class, I have learned a lot about the following topics; Keyes’ model of complete mental health/flourishing, genetic influences on behavior, depression, anxiety, and mood states, introduction to positive psychology, cultivating our strengths. The topic that has stuck with me the most is how important self-care is and how much it can really impact your mental health and wellbeing.

Before this class, I always thought of self-care as things like eating healthy and exercising and when I found out that it was so much more, I was shocked. Self-care includes topics such as, making time to self-reflect or wearing clothes that you like. I think I was shocked because I would’ve never associated these with self-care until I became more educated on the topic. Also, now when I think of self-care, I think of the many different aspects of it, for example, there is physical, psychological, emotional, spiritual, workplace/ professional self-care, and balance. When before all I associated with self-care was the physical aspect. I also really liked the self-care assessment that was given to us in class, it helped me reflect and better understand certain aspects that I need to work on that will better myself.

I also enjoyed learning about PERMA. PERMA stands for positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, and accomplishments. PERMA is associated with positive psychology and once I went down the list and reflected on it, I understood why.

Lastly, I enjoyed learning about forgiveness. The lecture that Everett Worthington gave was outstanding. He had very remarkable stories that kept my attention. I liked learning that there were two types of forgiveness; decisional and emotional. I also enjoyed learning that forgiveness can assist you in many ways such as better health, mental health, relationships, and spiritual well-being. I never would have known the impacts that forgiveness can bring.

From the Smarty Health Corner and Atrium Health: The Importance of Self-Care

Blog Post 1

Blog Post 1

When I first signed up for this class I was like, “okay being a sociology/psychology major, this class will be easy, I already know a lot in regards to mental illness.” Although, this class even thus far has changed how I thought about mental illness and what may come with it. Learning about twins and how there are connected mentally and how certain traits and mental illness may be passed down through parents and different generations was very interesting to me. I never knew so much about the genetic makeup of twins and how exactly they impacted one another.

Another thing that I had never really thought about was Keyes Model. It is very interested too see the difference between a flourishing mind and a mind with mental illness. I love learning about the different impacts having to do with each of these things, how we can help others dealing with suicidal thought and mental illness, and even how to help ourselves in these situations.

I am someone who has struggled with anxiety and depression since I was a child and this class has certainly given me a different outlook on things and different techniques to continue to learn and be active in the community while dealing with these two illnesses. It has helped me see that I am not the only one who is dealing with this and many people are researching and experimenting with how exactly to help others dealing with these obstacles.

When I first started this class I thought it was going to be more psych related and I was dissapointed at the beginning when it was not, but as we have moved through lectures it has been very eye opening and interesting for me to hear what our speakers have learned and what they have to teach us.

SOH Blog Post 1

SOH Blog Post 1

Throughout the first five weeks of this class, I have learned a lot as far as happiness and mental health issues, as well as bettering myself to live by having a more positive lifestyle.  First, the Keyes’ model illustrates how one can have a mental illness and still have high mental health. Then on the other hand, one can have no mental illness, yet have low mental health. This relates to our topic of depression, anxiety and mood disorders because an individual with any of the following may be diagnosed with one of those disorders, yet they could still be flourishing. However, an individual might not be diagnosed with a mental health disorder, but they could be languishing. Dr. Sood brought up important information regarding depression and anxiety stating how one can either have a generalized, diagnosed anxiety disorder, or they may just experience the day to day anxiety that is not particularly diagnosed. The same can be applied for depression. Disorders such as anxiety, depression and mood, can relate to genetics and twin studies as well as disorders and other health factors being passed down from generations. We learned about how if one twin were to experience a health issue, what the likelihood would be of their twin experience the same issue. We learned how there would also be differences depending on if the twins were monozygotic twins or dizygotic twins. We also discussed positive psychology and how PERMA promotes flourishing. This model helped me to realize what can contribute to positivity in one’s life. Since PERMA promotes flourishing, this goes back to relating to Keyes’ model since Keyes’ model also looks at how an individual can flourish in different situations. As far as cultivating one’s strength and the information learned in PERMA these two can relate. They can relate because I could take one of my top strengths, such as fairness and use that in the PERMA model letter R, relationships, to promote flourishing in my relationships through fairness.

Some information in the first five weeks that was new to my knowledge was Keyes’ model of complete mental health and flourishing. I had never heard of that before so I thought that it was interesting to learn about.

Class content that has been meaningful to me would definitely be the mindfulness exercises before classes. It has helped me to reduce my anxiety during different situations and I have been able to successfully utilize mindfulness outside of the classroom.

Science of Happiness #1

Science of Happiness #1

I think that a majority of the topics covered in the first few weeks of the class go hand and hand with one another. From mental illness to mental health and wellbeing, many important concepts have been discussed.

It was very surprising to me how Keyes’ describes mental health and mental illness through taking them out of context of one another. I love this view on the topic. Before hearing this I always believed that they were interdependent of one another. Meaning that if you had a bad mental illness you could not have good mental health. I also like the idea of flourishing that the model mentions when you have high mental health and low mental illness in combination with one another.

Another topic that I enjoyed hearing about was this introduction to positive psychology. I am a psychology major and most of my coursework never mentions positive psychology. I love how positive psychology aims to push us farther and become better versions of ourselves to improve happiness and life satisfaction. Positive psychology also believes in cultivating your strengths in order to live a more flourishing life.

I am a firm believer that mental health can be improved through diet and exercise. I think that I developed this view through a combination of genetic influences and environmental cues. My parents have always been very fit, they met each other at a gym if that tells you anything. I think that the food one eats has the ability to strongly influence your mood and how you perceive yourself. I think that eating a healthy diet makes you feel significantly better about yourself. It is almost like running on premium gas, rather then the regular grade, I also believe that exercise can greatly benefit your mental health and act as a protective factor against mental illness such as depression or anxiety. I love running. Running allows me a time of mindfulness in my day-to-day life. When I am on a run I feel very in the moment with my body and mind. Running has the ability to take me out of this autonomic world we live in.

 

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Blog Post 1

Blog Post 1

I believe that the topics covered in the first 5 weeks of the class both relate and differ from each other. It is easy to say that genetics have influence on behavior whether it is abusive or mental illness, but some may also say that they’re not connected. I believe that everybody in their life at some point feels depression, anxiety, and mood states. Some things trigger different people to feel these different feelings(depression, anxiety, and mood states). Also, most people react differently to different situations. Not everybody is the same.

New information that was surprising to me in the first 5 weeks of this class was the last speaker we had in class. It is crazy to think somebody can lose their mother, father, and brother all to different things and still be willing to forgive. Positive psychology can affect people strongly by simply thinking of the greater things in their life instead of what’s going bad in it. Once people get down about something, they tend to get depressed and say that their life sucks, but in reality there is a lot of good going for them in their life at that time.

The activity that I think helped me relate class content to my own life so far was the cultivating our strengths activity. It had the class focusing on what we are good at instead of what we are not good at. Instead of focusing on what aren’t so good at and telling us how we can work to be better in those areas we aren’t, we focused on what we can do to get through tough times.

ISTOCK, VIORIKA

Blog Post 1

Blog Post 1

These past five weeks I have learned a lot about the mind and the science of happiness. I was really excited to take this class because a friend of mind recommended it to me and I was honestly surprised that a class like this even existed. Within in just a few weeks, I was able to learn and understand new concepts that I am able to implement into my life.

For example, the Keyes’ Model identifies the relationship between mental illness and mental health/flourishing on how they are both related. I never really understood the difference until now. I’ve also learned a lot about genetic influences on behavior. The Family Tree assignment helped me go back and track my family history. Learning that certain illnesses can be passed down through genetics was were really surprising and interesting to me.

Coming from a person who has Anxiety, the topic about Anxiety, Depression and Mood States really stood out to me. Dr. Sood thoroughly explained how depression and anxiety go hand in hand and how it’s really important to recognize and treat these illnesses. I learned that depression can actually make your anxiety a lot worse than what it actually is. It’s important to seek help to treat mental illnesses because they  are real and they don’t go away if you just ignore it. During this week I was also able to learn that your thoughts control you only if you allow it to. As human-beings, there are thousands of thoughts that linger in our heads, however we shouldn’t give too much attention to the ones that bring us down. This correlates perfectly with Ms. Bryers lecture on positive psychology and how significant PERMA is to our daily lives. Our thoughts and environments plays a major role in our happiness and its important that we take care of our mind and feed it with positive thoughts and energy.

The last lecture we had about forgiveness and character strength made me realize the significance of letting go and moving forward in life. Accepting things for what they are and letting go of what is out of your control is a step towards finding your inner peace and happiness.

SOH Blog Post 1

SOH Blog Post 1

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As a psychology major, a large portion what we have learned is familiar to me. However, some aspects such as the Keyes’ model of complete health, have never been introduced. I liked the model because it was a good demonstrator for the levels one can achieve mental health (flourishing, moderate, and languishing).

It is important to understand the genetic influences that we are all predisposed to so that we can know the risk of certain mood disorders becoming prevalent. For myself, I know that depression and anxiety are common mood states among some family members. This is useful knowledge because it helps us understand our behaviors and counteract them with therapies and self-care if needed.

I myself am aware that I am someone who becomes easily overwhelmed and irritable. This class has taught me the importance of mindfulness and grounding myself when necessary. Unfortunately, it is easy to fall into habits of self destructing behavior and mood states. These are episodes when the states take place and do not necessarily mean that a disorder can be diagnosed. Although temporary, they can have a seemingly lasting effect and travel into different corners of our life. Mindfulness is significant and more people should be aware and utilize these methods in order to bring themselves out of those mindsets.

The topics of positive psychology and strength cultivation were interesting and I group them together because that’s what made the most sense in learning it. To study happiness and finding ways to become more satisfied and fulfilled people we have to know our strengths and weaknesses. This helps us to know what we have to work on to better ourselves. In doing so, we are more skillful and our self-esteem and confidence is boosted. These facets of happiness can be transferred in all areas of life: professionally, romantically, mentally, etc. I think one can be happy with one area of life and not the other so knowing strengths can definitely be an ally for someone who is looking to go on that journey of self discovery; it may even be the first step.

 

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Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

Being that I am a junior psychology major, I have already learned a large portion of the content that we have gone over in class so far. However, Science of Happiness opened my eyes during our class on 2/08 with Dr. Worthington’s lecture on positive psychology. Dr. Worthington’s primary focus of the lecture was on the topic of forgiveness. There are four types of forgiveness: forgiveness by God, forgiveness of self, person-to-person forgiveness, and societal forgiveness. The type of forgiveness that many people struggle with is person-to-person forgiveness because it can be difficult to pardon someone who has inflicted harm/hurt to yourself and your loved ones. We tend to seek revenge and justice when someone mistreats us. Dr. Worthington shared the heartfelt example of his mother and brother’s death. I commend and thank him for sharing such a personal tragedy to a room full of strangers. If he can forgive his mother’s murderer, then I should be able to forgive all those individuals who have done me wrong. I can choose either decisional forgiveness or emotional forgiveness. Decisional forgiveness is when you intend to renounce revenge and avoidance of the wrongdoer. Emotional forgiveness is when you replace the negative unforgiving emotions towards the wrongdoer with positive emotions. Depending on either sub-type of forgiveness that I choose, it will still be a challenging task. It can be very hard to let go of hurt and resentment to forgive others’ transgressions. However, this lecture taught me that dwelling in the past is detrimental to my mental and physical health. With forgiveness, we can achieve better physical & mental health, relationships, and spiritual well-being.

Blog Post #1 Mary C.

Blog Post #1 Mary C.

Throughout this week we have learned many different ways in which mental illness affects us and how we can help people to be more positive and how to be more supportive. I found it interesting that positive thinking was not the science of happiness. I have always attributed positive thinking to being happy. Key’s Model of Mental Health I found particular interesting because often people associate mental health with mental illness when in reality they are two separate things. Often times people confuse the two because they are so similar. When people have low mental health they are thought to be mentally ill but they really just need to work on their mental health, perhaps by seeing a therapist and talking about their problems.

The genetics factor that influences people’s happiness is intriguing as well. Genetics can cause people to have mental illnesses (also influenced by the environment). People can pass down traits that make it harder for them to live a happy life. One thing that can be passed down is depression. Depression can be a hard mental illness to deal with. Exercising can help elevate people’s mood which can help people with depression. I found this extremely interesting and have started to incorporate exercise more into my life and have seen great improvements.

In class we related the P in PERMA (Positive Emotion) to the exercise we did at the beginning of the semester where we all took test to look at our strongest traits. It showed us how our most positive traits were related to our positive emotions. In order to improve our least used positive emotions we need to work on our weakest traits. It was interesting to see the correlations between the positive emotions and our character traits.

 

OVERCOMING OUR OWN BIOLOGY

OVERCOMING OUR OWN BIOLOGY

Mental health has significant impacts on an individuals’ cognitive, emotional, and physical abilities. The dimensions of Keye’s Model of complete mental health/flourishing shows that a continuum is the absence of both mental illness and presence of flourishing while not dualistic is one or the other. Although nature vs. nurture was heavily argued to be the reason behind mental health, it has been proven that genetic and environmental factors contribute to these behaviors. Genetics has a 80-100% heritability influence on autism, 40-70% for Schizophrenia and bipolar illness, and 20-40% heritability influence on anxiety and depression.

Mood disorders begin at a young age but it is difficult to diagnose in young children considering the psychological changes they are experiencing. Depression is partially genetically influenced, while sadness isn’t. The difference between the two is sadness is temporary whereas depression leads people to feel hopeless and worthless while it isn’t self-treatable. Depression can cause low-attention span, substance abuse, and low self-esteem. In effect, it can interfere with school, work, appetite, and sleep. Anxiety and depression are often linked to similar biological factors with functioning impairment and decreased quality of life. While normal anxiety is often experienced by everyone daily, pathologic anxiety a chronic condition that impairs functioning and their overall well-being.

 

For anyone experiencing anxiety or depressive thoughts should seek professional help. In Dr. Dick’s lecture, she stated, “Genes are a disposition, not a destiny!” This quote gives hope to people with back genetic family background. People may be disposed to one path in life but changes in environmental factors can help change that. Happiness is only 50% hereditary, allowing for the other 50% to be environmentally influenced. If your family history has a lot of depression, a child can still gain happiness through environmental factors.

Good mental health is the absence of mental illness and presence of positive thoughts, joy, and happiness. If bad mental health is left untreated it can become severe and damaging. Dr. Dick explained “COBE” to be short for College Behavioral and Emotional Health Institute. Their mission is “To promote behavioral and emotional health in college communities through the integration of research with coursework, programming, and policy related to behavior and emotional health” (Powerpoint). The PERMA Wellbeing Theory helps us maximize each component to fulfill a life of happiness. PERMA is an acronym for “Positive emotion, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Accomplishment”. By following and applying the PERMA wellbeing theory to one’s life, they are more likely to obtain happiness. My favorite activity this semester has been the VIA Strengths survey was my favorite class activity because it showed me my weaknesses that I didn’t know I was slacking in. Since that assignment I have put effort into strengthening my weaknesses in order to develop healthy, positive habits to fulfill life long happiness.

 

 

https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/168718549/

Strengths vs Weakness

One of the things we did in class that I found interesting was take the VIA survey. To me it was pretty obvious what my results would be, because I’ve taken multiple personality test to see the kind of person I am.

My top five results were Forgiveness, Humor, Social Intelligence, Honesty, and Love. When someone heard my results it was apparent to my group in discussion that I am a very social person and the way I even decided to go first sharing my results showed as well.  I admit I’m interested in people and it doesn’t take me long to make friends with just about anyone.

The results that had me a little off beat were my last five though.  Spirituality, Prudence, Perseverance, Judgment, and Love of Learning. This struct a cord with me, because I immediately started trying to think of situations where I did show these traits off. It took a little for me to swallow even though these aren’t my top five strengths they are not my weaknesses. So it helped me in the long run to try and showcase one of these skills more everyday to bring them up.

Blog Post #1

Blog Post #1

I think all aspects of mental health are interconnected in some way or another. I think the first portion of our learning with the Keye’s model of mental health and flourishing focused on people as individuals and provided different approaches of what could possibly constitute mental health within. What we learned next was more about genetics and how those influence what exactly constitutes mental health and how much it can vary based on our genetic makeup. Lastly I felt like we learned about more external influences and how they can be of impact on our mental health. They are 3 different sources, but they are all contributing to our well being in different ways, and I think it was really helpful for me to distinguish the differences between them and feel comforted that not all of this is in my control–it’s in my makeup. For me, one of the most interesting classes we had was on 1/16 when we studied the question: What causes human behavior?. I never knew the actual breakdowns of genetic variances between relationships like siblings and parents, versus twins and what the impact of that can be. I have been really impacted by the emphasis of mindfulness that we have been putting on this class. As someone who struggles with anxiety,  this class has made me more aware of the things that are potential triggers to my anxiety and it has made me better equipped to handle it when it comes. It has also made me feel less alone because I now know the medical component of this illness and how many people it affects.

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